General Strike in Greece, Clashes in Athens

General Strike in Greece, Clashes in Athens

The general strike in both private and public sectors has seen mass protest marches across the country and extended clashes in Athens with dozens of shops and banks destroyed and one man arrested.

The first general strike as a response to the austerity measures in Greece has met with huge success as the country has been immobilised by the strike with no boats airplanes buses or trains moving within or from and into the country. The media strike which is part of the general strike means there are no news broadcasts or newspapers which limits the extent of our information gathering on the strike and its protest marches

In Athens the protest march is expected to have gathered around 40,000 people and had a very dynamic character. The first incident occurred when a plain clothed policeman was stopped and beaten by protesters. Later riot police tries to side the numerous anarchist block but was deterred by large numbers of protesters. Before reaching Syntagma square several corporate shops and banks were smashed by protesters. In sytnagma square extended clashes between protesters and riot police forces unfolded with use of tear gas on the part of the cops and rocks and molotov cocktails by the protesters. During the clashes Giannis Bardakos, a member of a socialist opposition party DIKKI, was arrested. DIKKI has published a communique condemning the arrest and the "policy of occupation forces' imposed poverty and underdeveloped applied by the State of oppression and violence" adding that "anti-people's terrorism will not pass". The encircling methods of the police at the corner of Phillelinon street however failed, two workers who the cops had arrested were rescued and the two riot police squads were encircled by protesters and heavily beaten with many riot shield broken. The clashes continues across Panepistimiou street where the posh Zonars cafe was invaded by large numbers of enraged workers and teachers who smashed it. The protesters then moved towards the Polytechnic which is under occupation by students in response to the breach of campus asylum in Zografou a few days ago, with many shops across Patision avenue destroyed. The general feeling is one of great success with the forces of repression humiliated and the working class having proved its will to struggle against the state onslaught.

The protest march in Salonica gathered around 5,000 people under rain. Despite small skirmishes no clashes ensued until protesters returning to the Universities moved to destroy car control medal bars at its entrance and came under police attack. The police with utter disregard to the constitution moved its forces into the university asylum and led the protesters to barricade themselves in the rectorial headquarters which are now under occupation in protest to the renewed breach of the asylum.

Protest marches took place in many other towns with mass participation: in Heraklion Crete the marches numbers more than a thousands, while in Volos 500 marchers broke away from the march to break the security cordon of the METKA factory and hold an assembly in the premises.

As far as the antifascist counterdemo planned for today afternoon in Amerikis Square, both the fascist gathering and the antifascist counterdemo were declared banned by the district attorney. As a result, antifascist marches were prevented to reach the square by strong riot police forces and marched instead in the streets of Kypseli chanting antiracist and proletarian solidarity slogans. The fascist scum never even appeared for their advertised bigotry stunt at the square.

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Posted By

taxikipali
Feb 24 2010 18:54

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cheintransition
Feb 25 2010 12:06

taxikipali, a humble thanks for your articles on Greece; The so-called birth place of Western democracy is now haunted by its own foolishly self-proclaimed image until that very image is destroyed to the ground. Its ashes will provide fertile soil for new generations. I can not think of any other posts, or discourse for that matter, that inspired me more than yours.

s

saya-jin
Feb 25 2010 18:32

No matter how many critique hit the Greek events, but still this is the most intensive struggle throughout Europe... Wish you good luck there!

Is there any group to contact with, to visit the Greek comrades?

PS: Special thanks to taxikipali for delivering so much news from there!

Steven.
Feb 25 2010 21:18

the groups TPTG and Blaumachen are in touch with libcom, and have produced a lot of interesting stuff about struggles there. Not in nearly as much volume a taxikipali however!

from_gr
Feb 25 2010 22:00

You couldn't find a group to contact with??!! Are you serious? : )

Athens
http://pat61.squat.gr
http://anarxikoiaigaleo.squat.gr/
http://www.thersitis.gr/
http://anarxiko-resalto.blogspot.com/
http://stekiantipnoia.squat.gr/
http://katalipsinf.blogspot.com/
http://villa-amalias.blogspot.com/
http://stekipolytexneiou.org/index/
http://squathost.com/lelas_k/
http://sinelevsipolymorfikoy.squat.gr/
http://epf72.squat.gr

http://ese-union.wikidot.com/
http://www.esethessalonikis.gr/

Thessaloniki
http://delta.blogs.squat.gr/
http://terraincognita.squat.gr/
http://www.yfanet.net/
http://libertatiasquat.blogspot.com/
http://www.resistance2003.gr/

Larissa
http://ikalarisa.squat.gr/

Crete
http://evagelismos.squat.gr
http://rosanera.squat.gr/
http://squatartreth.blogspot.com/

Kavala
http://anarxikoikavalas.blogspot.com/

Veria
http://baruti.squat.gr/

Corfu
http://katalipsielaia.squat.gr/

Serres
http://astserron.blogspot.com/

(These are only those that i have bookmarked, i guess there are many more)

They are in Greek only, but maybe if you contact them, they'll understand. The best thing though, if you want to visit them, is to come here and search, as they might not answer to an email if they don't know you. It's not difficult at all to find the squats, if you want to... Just watch out and don't ask an undercover cop tongue

Mike Harman
Feb 26 2010 07:41

Just a note this made it onto TV news in Japan. I still don't understand the commentary well enough to get the political tone of it, but they had video of the clashes and march, then interviews with workers on the march, and a segment about the economy being shit - was a proper 5+ minute segment with a reporter on the ground etc.

taxikipali
Feb 26 2010 21:38

Thank you comrades fro your comments!

Update: According to all available information, during the protest march in Athens apart from the above mentioned man, two more people were arrested. According to the police, 22 cops were injured, 9 hospitalised, and several riot shields destroyed. The Union of Foreign Correspondents has denounced systematic brutality against journalists by the police forces during the march. During the march, part from the 13 shops and a dozen of banks that were damaged, one bank was also bricked up by protesters (you can see the video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KV15CVJIvQk).

The occupation of the rectorial headquarters of the Aristotelian University of Salonica continues in protest to the ruthless breach of the academic asylum by police forces during the general strike. A protest march starting from the University grounds to the city centre is currently under way. At the same time, the occupation of the rectorial headquarters of the Polytechneio in Athens still continues.

On the front of the lay-off of the worker of Agra publications, the earlier mentioned campaign by sold-out intellectuals to support the sacking and isolate the labour struggle which is unfolding around it has come under attack by a string of letters by anarchist and leftist thinkers. An interview of the worker, Ntinos Palaestidis can bee seen here (in greek): http://athens.indymedia.org/front.php3?lang=el&article_id=1136577

On the antifascist front, according to the bourgeois media 29 fascists were detained by riot police forces when they tried to realise the banned racist demo at Amerikis square two nights ago. One of them, a leading cadre of the pro-junta weekly Stohos, has been imprisoned as a libel case is also pending against him. It is characteristic that amongst the detained scum is a County Administration member of the Nea Dimokratia Party, Christina Sideri, once again proving the organic links of the ex-government with neo-nazi thugs.In the latest act of neo-nazi violence, a teacher in Chania came under attack for teaching immigrants. The neon-nazis stopped her on the street and engraved her hand with a swastiga with the help of a razor. A video of the anti-fascist march performed after the banning of the counterdemo at Amerikis square can be seen here: http://athens.indymedia.org/front.php3?lang=el&article_id=1136079

Finally kiosks, a vital sector of everyday life in greece, have called a 24h strike for the 2nd of March protesting against the austerity measures. At the same time taxi drivers have called a 48h strike for the 2nd and 3rd of March against the austerity measures.

Baderneiro Miseravel
Feb 28 2010 13:19

Thanks for the news!

Just for the record, I'm taking the liberty of translating your news to portuguese and publishing them in the Indymedia Brasil. It's been pretty useful and your clear writing certainly makes the translating work much easier.

Considering that the media here doesn't talk about what is going there at all, it's quite valuable information that is surely going to spread.

Steven.
Feb 28 2010 19:36

thanks for translating it!

taxikipali
Feb 28 2010 20:43

Thank you so much for this Baderneiro!

grupo_ruptura
Feb 28 2010 21:41

Translation to Spanish in Klinamen.org:

Huelga general en Grecia, enfrentamientos en Atenas

Thanks for your news, taxikipali