Sunday, October 19, 2008


Politics in Greece has always been highly confrontational and this is especially true recently. Here are two articles from the LibCom site about recent struggles in that country.

Residents clash with police in Greek refuse dump row:
October 16th, 2008
by taxikipali

Local resistance to open-refuse dump near Ioannina escalates to clashes after an army of 230 riot policemen charges barricades
On the 15th of October the residents of Elliniko village near the city of Ioannina, North West Greece, blockaded the construction of the open-refuse dump (XYTA) to which they have been opposed for over 18 months. The response of Athens was to send 19 battalions of riot police forces (MAT), that is about 230 policemen, to open the way for the bulldozers.

Faced with what they termed "an occupation force", local people erected barricades. Riot police resorted to tear gas and attacked the residents who responded by pelting officers with stones and molotov cocktails.

The situation remains tense, with three residents and five riot policemen in hospital as a result of the clashes, thus opening yet another front of local environmental resistance on the confrontational model set by Lefkimi in the island of Corfu.
Meanwhile students in Greece continue to occupy over 300 secondary and high schools in protest against conservative education "reforms". Here's another article from Libcom on this struggle.
Occupied schools in Greece face repression:
October 19th, 2008
by taxikipali
As the tide of secondary and high-school squats rises again across Greece, the state responds with repression
More than 300 secondary and high schools (that is 1/6 of the national total) around Greece are currently occupied by their pupils who are demanding the reversal of several articles of the conservative educational reform that caused widespread revolt by students and university staff during the academic years of 2005-2006-2007. The renewed resistance to the law which has been rejected by the entire school and academic community and is considered to be the first step towards the abolition of student-pupil participation in management, is being faced with unprecedented measures of repression. There have been consistent efforts by the government and the local authorities to criminalise the school squats, whereas neonazi attacks against squatted schools in Athens have been reported.

Most recently, on the 17th of October, the president of the pupil's council and one more pupil of the 4th high-school of the city of Karditsa were arrested on charges of obstructing the function of a public service, after the pupils of the squatted school staged a demo against the installation of an iron fence around the premises, with the central slogan being "School is not a Prison". After the reaction of the Teacher's Union (OLME) the pupils were released.

While the repression escalates, several schools in Athens and Thessaloniki have opposed the annual election of representatives, opting for direct-democratic procedures without the realm of state-recognised legality. In the city of Peiraeus, on the 17th of October the Autonomous Coordination Squat Committee, held a protest march for "Liberatory free and public education".

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