Exarchia, Athens: Update regarding the first month of operation of Themistokleous 58 Squat

(You may read the first announcement of the squat here.)

During the previous month, Themistokleous 58 Squat participated in a series of actions/demonstrations:

On January 16th 2016, we took to the streets for the first time with a distinct bloc of nearly 30 individuals at the rear of the demonstration in memory of Shahzad Luqman in the Athens neighbourhood of Petralona. Slogans in various languages were shouted and spray-painted, and an ATM was vandalised along the way. After the demo finished, the sign above the local office’s entrance of the ruling SYRIZA party in Ano Petralona was taken down.

On January 23rd, we participated in the demonstration in solidarity with migrant detainee Sanaa Taleb, which started from Victorias Square, downtown Athens. Among other slogans, the following were chanted: Common struggles of locals-migrants; let’s expropriate the bourgeoisie’s wealth // Solidarity structures, nuclei of riots, war against the war of those in Power // Alerta, alerta, antipatriota // Listen up you miserable patriots: we will set fire to national borders // Collective kitchens, burnt cop cars, multiform struggles for freedom // January shopping sales are not nearly enough; let’s expropriate en masse // The [national] flag looks nice after it’s burnt // Freedom for those [women] in prison cells // National unity is a trap; we, the excluded ones, have no fatherland // Sanaa, hold strong until freedom, etc.

On January 30th, we participated with a bloc of around 40 individuals (squatters and people in solidarity) in the defense of Victorias Square’s lower left corner, to guarantee that the place would stay untouched by Golden Dawn stabbers. We remained in the square from 18:00 to 23:30. We then left in a coordinated manner, together with the rest of the formations/collectives that participated in the square’s defense and alongside the vast majority of migrants who were present, marching all together to Exarchia. Recognising our co-responsibility for moving a group of nearly 50 undocumented individuals from Victorias Square to Exarchia, an initiative of individuals from the squat entered the premises of the Athens Polytechnic School so that people could stay there overnight without being threatened by Greek police’s thugs in uniform or groups of Nazis that were out on a hunt. The next morning, the approximately 50 migrants left the Polytechnic and returned to Victorias Square.

On February 4th, we took part in a defense group of the Anarchist Black Bloc that participated in the strike demonstration in central Athens. As in all previous instances, the group of squatters and people in solidarity that took to the streets was international and multiracial.

On February 10th, we dropped a banner off the squat in solidarity with the autonomous social centre Klinika in Prague, which was recently attacked by fascists.

On February 11th, a small group of us participated in the demonstration in solidarity with Vancouver Apartman squat with a banner reading: “Squats are a struggle for life.”

Complementary to the aforementioned activity, we declare our solidarity with self-organised structures and projects that have been threatened with repression or hit by the State and/or fascists over the last period.

As far as the building’s operation itself is concerned, the squat’s common-use spaces (assemblies room & kitchen on the ground floor) open at 08:30 daily (except Sundays, when they open at 10:00), and the squat’s doors close strictly at midnight. The house is full for the time being, and we are establishing an effective self-organised communal living. Drug and alcohol use as well as smoking are not allowed inside the squat’s spaces. The specific agreement between all participants in the squat corresponds to our need of being housed in a residential environment free from brawls and safe for all persons involved in the project, regardless of their age. We underline the fact that the squat does not meet the requirements for housing people with serious mobility impairments, mental health issues and substance dependence. The ‘free shop’ on the ground floor (give & take space for exchange of clothing and other items) is open from 12:00 to 20:00 daily. The squat’s open assembly takes place in the ground-floor room every Monday at 20:00, where people in solidarity are able to discuss various topics concerning the squat, participate in the different working groups, and suggest ideas for the improvement of the project’s functioning.

The following is a list of needs we have at the moment:

Technical matters/reparations: Paints, pallets/wood products, donations for plumbing works

Kitchens: Mini fridges, mini ovens, cooking gas bottles, forks/spoons/knives, plates, cups/drinking glasses

Food: Olive oil (priority need), pantry staples (rice, pasta, legumes), milk, vegetables and fruit

Cleaning supplies: Detergents, soaps, toilet paper

Gardening supplies: Soil, seeds, pots & saucers

General needs: Heaters, craft materials/stationery, sewing machine.

In closing we would like to thank everyone who have factually supported the project so far. The struggle continues, until the total destruction of the States and their borders.

Themistokleous 58 Squat

in Greek