In the run-up to the huge protest marches of the coming weekend in Salonica, Greece sees immigrants' hunger strikes, Wind workers take up pickets for national strike, as well as the Athens Stock Market and one Ministry hit by guerrillas.
Tension is building across Greece in expectation of the International Exibition of Salonica, the annual start of the protest season in the country when the PM usually announces the new year's programme. As this time around the PM is expected to either announce the dissolution of his government and immediate elections or make some life-saving surprise move, the stakes are high. Huge protest marches which traditionally swamp Salonica in the first weekend of September are expected to be militant, while even police unions having announced they will march...in uniform...
In the run-up of the weekend, a series of social and labour struggles as well as the ever-surprising re-emergence of urban guerrilla attacks have been setting the pace. More specifically:
In Pagani, the notorious immigrants' detention camp in Lesbos island recently brought to the public spotlight after UN condemnations of barbarity and No-Border actions, 47 minors from Afghanistan, Somalia and Palestine have started a hunger strike on Tuesday 1st of September. The hunger strikers announced: ''We don't need anything but freedom no food, no medicine. We are in hunger strike.'' For of the minors are in a "dry" hunger strike, refusing to take any liquids, and already suffering medical consequences. The hunger strikers have already been imprisoned in the camp for 60 days with no sign of their release.
At the same time workers of the international telecommunication corporation Wind have declared a national strike for Thursday 3rd of September picketing all the central premises of the corporation. The industrial action has been taken in response to the recent lay-off of a female worker in the company which the strikers have denounced as a "antiunionist terrorist measure".
Meanwhile on the urban guerrilla front, Athens was rocked by a big explosion on Wen. 2/9 which destroyed the facade and two floors of the newly built Athens Stock Market setting off a fire in the inside that was controlled by the fire brigade. The explosion was caused by a bomb in a parked van outside the Stock Market and was pre-announced to the press to avoid injuries. Nevertheless due to police incompetence one woman was slightly injured by broken glass as officers failed to evacuate the area properly. From the explosion several car-expos around the building were also damaged. Earlier the same morning another bomb caused small damaged to the Ministry of Macedonia and Thrace in Salonica. Speculations on the culprits fall on the usual range of left-wing guerrilla groups, yet as of this moment no organisation has claimed responsibility for either of the attacks.