#Skouries: branding the local community a criminal organization

Tolis Papageorgiou

Prominent Greek environmental activist Tolis Papageorgiou is due to appear in court today 07 July 2014. Together with 28 co-defendants, Papageorgiou faces charges of establishing a criminal organization and instigating violence for his action against ore mining in north-eastern Halkidiki, in particular in the Skouries forest, that has over the past two years become emblematic of the situation.

A civil engineer by profession, Papageorgiou hails from Ierissos, the village at the epicentre of the resistance movement to mining. After a successful career in Thessaloniki, he chose to return to his hometown in the early 1990s, when it became clear that ore mining was set to be expanded to such levels that the whole of north-eastern Halkidiki, a region of exceptional natural beauty and biodiversity, was to be transformed into an industrial wasteland, leading to the utter destruction of its delicate ecosystem and, consequently, of its society and culture.

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Kostas Sakkas: Three years on remand in order to… make an example

Translation of Katerina Kati’s article for The Editors’ Νewspaper, 03 June 2013

Re-posted from eagainst.com

He has been on remand for 3 years and was prosecuted twice for the same offence, despite the fact that his name doesn’t even appear in the case file.

The maximum time he should spend on remand expires tomorrow; and he chose this date to start a hunger strike, clarifying that “this is not an act of desperation, but rather to keep up the fight.”

He was prosecuted twice for the same offence. He was put on remand twice.

The maximum time he could be held on remand for the second time is twelve months. But when this time was over, instead of being released, his detention period was extended for another six months. Meanwhile, his first trial has not been completed and the second (for which he is now being held prisoner) has not even started.

All this, seventeen years after the adoption of Law 2408/1996, which prohibits splitting a single case against the same defendant into several cases and imposing multiple, successive pre-trial detentions, in order to prevent that temporary custody extends beyond the statutory 18 months.

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The Vaxevanis trial: no lawyers, no witnesses? Apparently no problem.

As we posted earlier today, the re-trial of Kostas Vaxevanis for publishing, back in October 2012, a list of 2000+ names of Greek bank account holders in Switzerland, known as the Lagarde list, was due to take place this morning in the Athens courthouse. It took the court a full hour and a half, from 9:00 until 10:30am, and three private conversations in recess, to determine that, in the absence of two of three defense lawyers and of three of four defense witnesses, the trial should be postponed.

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Greek Helsinki Monitor: "Some people support freedom of speech… only for racist speech"

The Greek Helsinki Monitor (GHM) issued today a press release ahead of a trial tomorrow involving three of its officials as well as three officials from the Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece (CBJCG), who are accused of false accusations, witness perjury and libel by Kostas Plevris. Plevris is widely considered as the theoretician of neo-Nazism in Greece and was sued by the GHM and the CBJCG for his book Jews: The Whole Truth. A first tribunal had found him guilty of antisemitism  in 2007, but the sentence was overturned on appeal in 2009 in a decision that was ratified by the Supreme Court in 2010. The Supreme Court decision was deemed scandalous by many, given the contents of the book, which includes for instance chapters titled “The religion of the Jews: crime and misanthropy” or “The Holocaust: evidence of a lie” (you can listen to last Saturday’s #rbnews international show on laws against racism in Greece for context on this matter).

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#rbnews international show 18 May 2013: The letter, spirit and (lack of) enforcement of laws against racism in Greece

In this week’s edition of the #rbnews international show, we continued our series about fascism and antifascism in Greece with an interview with @Chiguire79. @Chiguire79 is a lawyer and friend of radiobubble, and he explained to us the existing legal framework against racism and its shortcomings but also what we can expect from the new proposed bill against racism, which was finally brought to parliament yesterday.

You can read more about the proposed bill here. You can also find the rest of the shows in this series under the tag fascism and antifascism series.

And of course, you can listen to the podcast after the jump.

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#rbnews international show 17 November 2012

By @IrateGreekOn the #rbnews international show on 17 November 2012, our guest was Joanna Kakissis, journalist with National Public Radio and Time magazine. We discussed the commemoration of the 1973 Polytechnic University uprising, the delay in the disbursement of Greece’s latest tranche of bailout loans, and the independence (or not) of the Greek judiciary. You can follow Joanna on Twitter @joannakakissisIn tribute to the 1973 Polytechnic uprising but also to celebrate World Tolerance Day on 16 November, we played songs from “Our Great Circus”, an anti-Junta musical first performed in Athens in the summer of 1973. The promotion of World Tolerance Day is supported by the 1 Against Racism network.

You can listen to the podcast and download the weekly news bulletin in English after the jump.

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