Migration and Struggle in Greece

Posts Tagged ‘police’

Senegalese street vendor died during police operation in Athens

Posted by clandestina on 2 February 2013

An immigrant from Senegal died falling from a height, on the rails of the subway in Thiseio station in central Athens, during an operation of Municipal Police to remove peddlers from tourist area.

A big operation of Municipal Police started on Friday afternoon on the touristic area of Thiseio, in central Athens, to remove immigrants from the streets, who work as peddlers to live. During this operation Cheikh Babacar Ndiaye a 37 years old immigrant from Senegal, was chased and he died falling from a height, on the rails of the subway in Thiseio station. From the blood seen on the pictures possibly his death resulted from the fall.
Subway metro services were disrupted for at least two hours. First aid assistants removed the body of the immigrant from the rails. Meanwhile his friends gathered at the station, together with other people from Senegal.
copsSome of them mourned, but when they saw the stretcher with the dead body they began to shout and protest. Some of them they shouted that Police is racists. Riot police arrived immediately and attacked the gathered people, and cleared the area around the station. At the same moment of the attack the dead body of immigrant was moved to an ambulance and left the area, for an unknown and undeclared direction, in spite of the questions made ​​on this.

Source & photos:



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Witness to immigrant’s murder is beaten up by policemen

Posted by clandestina on 18 December 2011

On Saturday December 3, 2011, a 33-year-old Kurd immigrant was beaten up by policemen of the Pyrgos Monofatsiou police department (Crete, Greece). Ahmed Salin has the “misfortune” to be the sole prosecution witness against the port police officers who in 2009 beaten to death Kurd immigrant Arivan Osman Aziz in Igoumenitsa. Read the rest of this entry »

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Leaks about planned gigantic detention centers, racist attacks on the rise

Posted by clandestina on 20 November 2011

According to  Eleutherotypia newspaper,  the “Ministry of Citizen Protection”, taking advantage of the new coalition government in Greece, where members of the far-right LAOS party participate, is planning to create two gigantic detention centers for immigrants in Athens. The two new detention centers “should be in the area of Attikovoiotia (close to Athens) with a capacity of about 5-6 thousand people, to offer real relief to the capital city”.
LAOS also demands the withdrawal of the citizenship bill, voted 1,5 years ago.

Meanwhile, racist attacks are on the rise again. Last Saturday, in Mylopotamos in Crete, 3 immigrants from Pakistan were beaten up in their own home and a car owned by another immigrant was set on fire.
In Athens, two Kurds from Iraq were beaten up by 15 policemen while held in custody, awaiting their trial. They were brought back to the prison, where a prison warden, realizing how badly they had been beaten up, ordered their transfer to the prison’s hospital.
(photo here)

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The transformations of Petrou Ralli Street, or the search for asylum in Greece.

Posted by clandestina on 29 March 2010

This is a translation of this filoxenoi.wordpress post. More posts on Petrou Ralli str. Directorate for Foreigners here, here and here.

Many thanks to Olga for her help with this.

The transformations of Petrou Ralli Street, or the search for asylum in Greece

26/03/2010 by filoxenoi

The “department of foreigners” at Petrou Ralli is a reference point of the “glorious” policies of the Greek state in terms of asylum granting, as all those that follow the developments in the field know.  It consists of humiliating bureaucracy, indecent treatment, endless waiting hours in queues, no sense of rationality, poor or non-existent medical care, assaults, torture and even murders.

This situation has caused some reactions and resistance. When three refugees were murdered while waiting outside the directorate, refugees and sympathizers gathered and blocked the streets, demonstrated and made the events public. After all this, the ever- efficient people in charge there came up with the solution: to transfer the entrance from Petrou Ralli street to Salamina street – “to better serve” the thousands of people that were gathering to make their applications .  With regard to the process and the realities that these people were facing, absolutely nothing changed, apart from the crucial fact that they were now less visible. The Greek police – which, due to another Greek peculiarity, was responsible for the asylum granting – would be able to experiment as much as it wanted on the bodies and souls of the hundreds of refugees that had already started making the now infamous “queue of Salaminias”, hidden from the indiscreet eyes of various “curious” and “unwanted” passers-by.

In any case, one should not forget that those who managed to get to the end of the Salaminias queue all they were granted was a small paper, by which they could claim having an appointment, usually after several months, occasion at which they could file the application and then have their cases examined and decided upon. One  should also not forget that “out of 15.928 asylum applications presented to Greece in 2009, only 0,04% were accepted and the refugee status was only granted to 0,06% of the cases”.

Over the last months, the immigration policy of the Greek state including the policies on asylum have being going through a process of restructuring and remodeling. One part of the restructuring, at least at an institutional level, seems to be the the law regarding the granting of Greek citizenship to second generation immigrants and the further sealing of the country’s borders.

Regarding the asylum policies, there have been up to now –always socialist- proclamations for the improvement of the process of asylum granting by assigning it to an independent commission, staffed with experts on immigration and asylum issues, interpreters etc., and with the role of the police regulated to be less important.

In the meantime, the queue has disappeared. Not because there are no people in Greece that need protection from their own countries’ regimes, but because the responsible body refuses to take more applications. In other words, whoever goes to the directorate of foreigners at Petrou Ralli, will leave empty handed, in an absurd story of Kafkaesque inspiration. As easily as that, the modern “hospitable” Greek democracy, the one springing directly out of the basic principles of the ancient Greek civilisation of Xenios Zeus, refuses to accept and register the applications for asylum (the access to which, according to the 1951 Geneva Convention on the legal status of refugees, should be undisturbed and the mere expression of seeking asylum by the refugee should be enough for its registration).

As easily as that, the hospitable Greek democracy condemns hundreds of people to live in fear and to be helpless in the hands of the cops that they will encounter. They even face torture and death with their obligatory return to their countries, from which they fought so hard to escape, since the controls and the expulsions from the country are still going on -despite the fact that the asylum procedures have stopped…

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“Sweep” and evacuation operations in Patras and Athens.

Posted by clandestina on 25 March 2010

This is last summer repeating, with evacuations and mass arrests in Patras and Athens – about last summer see this post and this post) .  The continuity of oppressive policies against sans papiers between the previous government and the current one cannot be disguised with cheap sensational denouncements by government officials of immigrant plight.

Early yesterday, Wednesday 24 of March, the police evacuated the abandoned train station of Aghios Andreas and arrested 70 Sudanese refugees who had found refuge there.  This happened two days after the refugees had made a protest in the streets of Patras  against the inhumane conditions they are forced to live under.   The Common Solidarity Action organises events in Patras to protest against the recent developments.  The story behind this new case of evacuation and mass arrest in Patras is once more one involving municipality authority and private real estate interests.  (sources:, ).

This is also the case in the evacuations at Athens Downtown.  The plan launched by the previous government last summer continues now under the new one.  Police and other authorities, on the pretext of operations against drugs and prostitution, blockade Sokratous, Evripidou, Verantzerou and more streets of Athens “historic centre” and move out immigrants and refugees.  Up to last week there hade been 61 arrests.   sources:

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Police attacks protestors at Venna refugee concentration camp.

Posted by clandestina on 23 March 2010

source:,  Thanx to Ben for his help with this post.

police force at the horrible camp

The horrible living conditions in the Venna detention centre, a refugee camp located 30 minutes outside the northern Greek city of Komotini, was the spark that fueled over 100 protestors to converge on the site on Sunday. Among the protest group were doctors, lawyers and members of the No Borders Assembly.

The group was met at the site in Venna by a police force that also had around 100 members, among them much riot police. The group of activists was there to protest while the doctors among the group checked the health and living conditions of those inside the detention centre.

A clash between the protest group and riot police began after the police attacked the group on no provocation at all. The police threw stones at the protestors and then moved in on them with their clubs, injuring two people after hitting them in the face and head. Some members of the riots squad were also injured in the clash.

Three people were arrested and transferred to the police station in Komotini but the rest of the protest group was stopped from entering the town after the police blocked the Egnatia highway.


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More cases of racist police violence in Igoumenitsa

Posted by clandestina on 23 March 2010

source:, thanx to Ben for his help with this post.

photo from athens indymedia

photo from athens indymedia

On March 10, Igoumenitsa port police beat an innocent immigrant with their clubs in the port area of Igoumenitsa. The man sustained serious injuries in the attack.


This followed a similar incident where police harassed two men seeking assistance at a local health centre. The men were tormented and pushed around by the policemen who informed them that they could not use the services at the health centre and that it was “not a health centre for them”. 

The small town of Igoumenitsa has been known in the past for its racially motivated attacks on immigrants. One such attack occurred on an immigrant with severe health problems who was unable to defend himself when police set their dogs on the man (Police brutality once more in Igoumenitsa: Cops let loose their dog against immigrant).

The attacks continue, and as recently as last Wednesday, when an immigrant disembarked a ferry from Italy and was met by waiting port policemen.  

It is alleged the man had been beaten by both the Italian police and security thugs aboard the ferry, before being handed over to the Greek police for further punishment. His injuries were so severe that his internal organs had been seriously damaged by the repeated beatings. 

The situation in Igoumenitsa is out of control with local police using racially motivated violence in a display of abuse against these people’s basic human rights. The Igoumenitsa police continue to raid the immigrant settlement near Ladochori and on March 4 violently attacked six immigrants and left them with serious injuries.  

solidarity assembly banner@2nd of March rally

Igoumenitsa may be an isolated provincial town and the local police may believe their crimes will remain unknown, but they are wrong. Those people in solidarity with immigrants from Western Greece now monitor the situation and speak out against the abuse of innocent people. As the protests on March 2 have shown, nothing will remain in darkness.  

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One more case of incrimination against immigrants

Posted by clandestina on 18 March 2010

Source of this article athens indymedia

– many thanks to Ben for his help with this translation

On March 10, a Sans Papier from Guinea found himself in Amerikis Square in downtown Athens. He had arrivied in Greece one week earlier and was looking for a better life.

He, like the countless number of refugees before him, was seeking refuge from a country torn apart under colonialism.

The man came to Amerikis Square on March 10 to meet with fellow compatriots and learn from them about life in Greece, to learn about life as an unwelcomed guest. He would soon learn this difficult lesson the hard way, he would learn that rather than assist these people in need of help, the police hunt for those without papers and those seeking asylum.

Coincidently, the police launched an anti-drug operation in Amerikis Square on March 10, against the drug dealing, of course, the police themselves are not involved in.

After seeing the police conducting their “anti-drug operation”, the man from Guinea panicked and fearing arrest, he ran, only to be caught and handcuffed moments later.

The man’s compatriots searched for him tirelessly for two days, checking local police stations and elsewhere.

He was eventually located but had been charged with a criminal offence relating to a bag of hash found by the police under a bush in Amerikis Square during their raid.

The police, looking to declare their anti-drug operation a success, charged the man for the bag of hash, even without proof it belonged to him.

The man came to Greece seeking a better life but thanks to the Greek police was now a “drug dealer”. This just goes to show that asylum seekers in Greece will, as the racist slogan goes “never be Greeks”.

Assembly for Solidarity to Immigrants


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Police brutality once more in Igoumenitsa: Cops let loose their dog against immigrant

Posted by clandestina on 8 March 2010

Yesterday night between 9 and 10 pm cops in Igoumenitsa some cops patroling along with a police dog came across an Iraqi immigrant, who was known to them, since he had been hospitalised at the local hospital.  The Immigrant has lost one lung due to exposure to poisonous gases in Iraq and suffers from heart dislocation.  When the cops saw him started making fun of him and then let loose their dog, which assaulted the immigrant, bite him at then knee and injured him, before the cops took it away.

The immigrant’s condition is not severe but he is still at the hospital.  People in solidarity are there with him.

Last Tuesday a solidarity demonstration took place in Igoumenitsa.    Police’s attitude was very much provocative, in continuity with their repeated assaults against the settlement of immigrants who try to pass to Italy through the town’s harbour.

Source of the info above

More about Igoumenitsa’s police hideous precedent here.

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Immigrant injured in Patras while fleeing police manhunt – fellow immigrants blockade the street

Posted by clandestina on 4 March 2010

This happened on Monday Feb 1. One of the Sudanese immigrants residing in the old train station settlement was injured while pursued by the police. His fellow immigrants blockaded one of the main streets in the area and there was tension with the police forces for some time. This was one of the many incidents that follow the frequent man hunts by the police.

Patras remains one of the gateways to the west of the desperate ones. Last summers’ barbarous levelling of immigrant settlement must not be allowed to repeat.

source patras indymedia

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