Migration and Struggle in Greece

Posts Tagged ‘criminalisation’

New law increases threat of deportation – deportation without trial over misdemeanors

Posted by clandestina on 23 June 2009


Emphasis added.

New law increases threat of deportation

“It is absurd for foreigners who have been in the country for a long time, including those from the European Union, to face the danger of deportation simply if they are charged with minor infractions,” said the site lawyer Vassilis Chronopoulos, who foresees a backlog of cases building up in the courts.

“It is totally unacceptable in a just state for someone to face devastating consequences before it has been established in a fair trial whether he is guilty and before he has exercised every legal right to defend himself,” said an organization called Greek Action for Human Rights.

The provisions of the proposed law have prompted a backlash from human rights activists.

An amendment to Greece’s existing legislation, which could be passed through a reduced summer session of Parliament later this week, may lead to foreigners living in the country legally as well as those who are here illegally being deported over misdemeanors even if they are not convicted.

With immigration becoming a pressing political issue, the government has embarked on an effort to adopt a series of measures that will stem the flow of illegal migrants arriving on Greek shores.

Sources told Kathimerini that the amendment would allow authorities to classify as “dangerous for public order and safety” any foreigner who is charged with committing a crime that carries a prison sentence of three months or more.

This means that the person can then be deported to his homeland before even standing trial, as long as that country has signed a bilateral repatriation agreement with Greece.

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A prosecutory fiasco adds to the police vengeful campaign against immigrants in Chania, Crete

Posted by clandestina on 17 June 2009

Surveillance and prosecutions in the town of Chania against struggling immigrants and their organisations continue. The police in the town after the two day networking and action event by the Forum of Immigrants in Crete launched a campaign of intimidation against the rise of immigrant assertive activity (see this post: Police campaign to intimidate struggling immigrants and communities in Chania, Crete). Among the arrestees of the days was Farahat Gabri, active in the migrant movement since years, whose health was in a bad condtion and remains so after his detention and the police denial of  access to medical care (instead of some hospital, he was transferred to Athens, away from his support networks – see this Chania Haunt of Immigrants – Social Haunt press release about this case – in Greek).

Yesterday though, the situation in the town took a bleaker and at the same time ridiculous – as regards the police’s “master plans” – twist.   After the arson attack against a police vehicle at the Souda district the police invaded the houses of immigrants well known from their year long residence in the town and their affiliations with the social struggle for rights.   Two of them were supposedly witnessed to be near the spot of the arson attack.

They were brought to court yesterday.  The witness was a junky, absolutely depended on state benefits support and intermingled with the undercover police in Chania.  The Courts of Chania were filled and surrounded with all sorts of police, who kept encouraging the “witness” to “say everything, and f*ck them”….

The Forum of Immigrants in Crete called the people who had been with the two immigrants that night to confer their testimonies to the court. Along with the Athens Indymedia post of some group assuming responsibility for the arsonist assault, and the rapid response by lawyers in Chania, the pressures culminated and led the court to to downgrade the charges (the accused immigrants would be otherwise trialled under the “terrorism-law”) and then release them until some DNA tests are carried out on supposedly found evidence.  The court will resume in ten days.

The Forum of Immigrants in Crete calls for vigilance.  This last police fiasco is not an isolated incident. It is not only part of the general terroristic “sweep operations” rush of the last days, but also – and crucially so -part of the vengeful campaign of the minister of public order Markoyannakis against the self – organized assertive initiatives of the Forum – the police and pertinent ministries will not forget and will not forgive the local community support and the momentum of  the last winter’s hunger strike.

Tomorrow (Thursday) an open discussion with the town’s associations, trade unions and political organisations is to take place at Papadopetrou building in the center of Chania.

(most info from Forum of Immigrants in Crete release).

Posted in Action & Struggle Reports, Calls to Action, Campaigns, Appeals & Petitions, Content Reproductions/ Adaptations/ Translations, Events, Other Groups' and Organisations' Releases, Undeclared War news | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

The gradual forging of links between “illegal” immigration and “terrorism” – in Greece as well….

Posted by clandestina on 2 May 2009

This is a Kathimerini article reproduction


In its annual report on international terrorism, the US State Department expressed concern about the “dramatic increase” in illegal immigrants entering Greece last year and suggested that the country risked becoming “a transit route for terrorists traveling to Europe and the United States.”

Starting its country report on Greece, the State Department noted that “Greece and the United States have a strong record of counterterrorism cooperation.” It also praised Greek authorities for “cooperating with US officials on information sharing as well as the training of Greek security and customs officials, and judicial personnel.”

But it expressed concern about the implications of the growing influx of immigrants streaming into Greece. “Greece is increasingly an EU entry point for illegal immigrants coming from the Middle East and South Asia, and there was concern that it could be used as a transit route for terrorists traveling to Europe and the United States,” the report said. It also noted that the number of would-be migrants entering Greece through the Aegean “increased dramatically in 2008 and about 100,000 illegal immigrants were arrested.”

The report also makes reference to disbanded terror group November 17, noting that convicted hit man Dimitris Koufodinas had issued a written statement from prison “extolling ‘direct action’ that would ‘strike blows to the capital system.’” It also mentions Revolutionary Struggle and the attacks the leftist group has claimed on a riot police bus in the Athens district of Goudi in December and on the Athens headquarters of oil company Shell in October. Rounding off, the report refers to attacks by self-styled anarchists and to the Athens riots last December, noting that “police officials pursued a more proactive approach to deterring these attacks and arrested perpetrators.”

A Foreign Ministry source in Athens said yesterday that it would examine the report and, “if it deems it necessary, will take the required action.”

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“System to blame for migrant crime rise” says a recent piece of research by the “system” itself …

Posted by clandestina on 2 May 2009

This is a Kathimerini article reproduction about a recent EKKE research.



Greece’s failure to get its immigration policy together, which has allowed thousands of migrants to slip through the cracks, had been identified as a main factor behind the fact that foreigners are responsible for a relatively large amount of crimes.

According to a newly published study conducted by the National Center for Social Research (EKKE), 92.78 of offenses connected with the submission of forged paperwork in 2007, including health insurance stickers and medical certificates, involved migrants.

Seven in 10 of those arrested for committing forgery that year were migrants. The complicated process for migrants to obtain residence permits or asylum is seen by many as being to blame for fueling this activity.

The frequent inability of migrants to obtain the right to work in Greece is also regarded as a key factor in the study, which found that in the same year just under 93 percent of those arrested for begging were migrants.

“On the part of public servants, one can discern wariness and prejudice toward migrants, which is reflected in abrupt and racist behavior,” according to the report. “This confrontational approach has a negative impact on society because it sends the message that migrants are a problem.”

The survey also shows that the percentage of murders committed by migrants is back on the rise after a brief lull. Having peaked at 41.3 percent in 2000, the rate fell to 31.6 in 2005 before rising to 36.3 percent in 2007. Almost four in 10 robberies were also carried out by migrants in 2007, up from 22.2 percent in 2000.

“The trend underlines a rise in some crimes carried out by migrants… which results in the myth being kept alive that migrants are behind violent crime,” said Ioanna Tsiganou, one of the academics behind the report.

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