Migration and Struggle in Greece

Press Release 16 February 2011

Posted by clandestina on 16 February 2011

Press Release

16 February 2011

DAY 23 of the hunger strike

Τhe 50 migrant workers on the 7th floor of the Labor Centre in Thessaloniki have been on hunger strike for 23 days now. Despite their fatigue, their spirits are high and they are determined to continue the hunger strike. The two hunger strikers who had been admitted to the Internal medicine Division of the public hospital on duty two days ago, on their 21st day of fasting, are being released today.

At 10am this morning, members of the Open Solidarity Initiative distributed leaflets and read out texts on the hunger strike and its demands with a PA system outside the General Administration Office of the Prefecture of Central Macedonia in Kalamaria, where everyday dozens of migrants go for the renewal of their residence permits.

The assembly of hunger strikers in Thessaloniki receives messages of solidarity everyday. Following their decision on Monday, the City Council of Thessaloniki voted for and released a text of support with the struggle of the migrant hunger strikers. Nine intellectuals from abroad, among them Noam Chomsky and Étienne Balibar, signed a message of support to the struggle of the 300 hunger strikers. The message concludes: “We express our support to their struggle for human dignity and basic civil rights. Elementary social justice dictates to legalize migrant workers and abrogate their penal and bureaucratic persecution”. A long list of Greek writers, playwrights, actors and musicians issued a text demanding the legalization of all immigrants who live and work in Greece, equal rights and equal access for all to work, education, health and culture, stating that the struggle of the 300 migrant hunger strikers is “the struggle of the whole of society for freedom, equality and justice”.

Today, Wednesday, the 16th of February 2011, at 7pm, the Antiracist Initiative and the First Degree Trade Unions Coordination are organizing an open discussion at the Labor Centre with speeches by representatives of the hunger strikers, by Nikos Paraskevopoulos, dean of the Law Faculty of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki,  by Konstandinos Tsitselikis, vice-president of the Ηellenic League for Human Rights, as well as by the organizers.
The Open Solidarity Initiative invites everyone to the interventions and solidarity actions planned for the next days:

On Friday, February 18, at 6pm, the Open Solidarity Initiative is organizing a solidarity march, beginning at Kamara.

On Friday, February 18, at 8pm, the Open Assembly of the Upper Town is planning an info-meeting at their social centre at the Koule Kahfe square

On Saturday, February 19, the Yfanet squat is planning a discussion and fund-raising event at Yfanet with the participation of a member of the Forum of Migrants in Crete who is accompanying the hunger strikers.

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