Athens (10/72013): Solidarity actions in the tourist center of the city under brutal police attack.
On Wednesday 10th, 2013 an impromptu demo took place, at Thisio, Athens in solidarity with Kostas Sakkas. Ιt was purposefully not announced and circulated mouth to mouth, so it had an element of surprise for police forces. The demo’s purpose was to hand out information material on Sakkas’ case mainly to tourists.
At the beginning of the demo there were 6-7 Delta Force policemen present, (a police force with motorcycles, well known for their brutality) and they were rather taken by the crowd (about 300 people). They started harassing a comrade, asking for his identity card etc, so we started walking towards them, shouting slogans and they had to let him go.
Then they just disappeared for a while, when out of nowhere the surrounding streets flooded with Delta and Dias bikes (police forces). They obviously didn’t anticipate such a crowd. Our aim was to go through the square at Plaka (a highly touristic site) and turn on Aeropagitou street but the police succeeded in cutting us off by forming a chain of policemen with batons and police bikers behind them. 10 minutes later we changed our course towards Thisio. Along the way to Thisio some of us started to write slogans with spray on walls and the police invaded the demo with their bikes, cutting us in three groups.
The spot was rather quiet, with no tourists. That shows that police were just waiting to attack us. Three policemen isolated an elder comrade and started beating him on the head, with their batons and fists, showing no mercy. We managed to draw them into a narrow street and they started throwing stun/flash grenades and then all hell broke loose.
The riot police (MAT) stormed at us, chasing us down every narrow street in the area trying to cut off any escape route. Most of us made it through. Others were contained in the archeological site of Thisio and after being badly beaten they were released.
Through all this chaos, although the police officer in charge shouted at Delta policemen to stay calm, they were just blindly and ruthlessly beating anyone they could get their hands on, enjoying every moment of it.
After turning a demo to a manhunt without any provocation, police took 10 comrades into custody and pressed trivial charges (resisting arrest) on 2 of them, leading to their arrest.
There is info that at Acropolis metro station, there was a group of Golden Dawn members, proving once again the close relations of greek police and Golden Dawn.
Sakkas is imprisoned against all constitutional and criminal laws by the greek state and the judicial system. But that is not enough for them. They are after anyone who tries to speak up, but we will not be silenced.
Free Kostas Sakkas
Solidarity to all political prisoners