On July 15, thousands of demonstrators gathered in Syntagma Square in Athens to oppose the austerity measures imposed on the people of Greece. At the same time, the majority of Syriza deputies and the right-wing pro-austerity parties like New Democracy and To Potami, where approving the agreement reached with the EU.
The police responded with repression and tear gas and carried out arrests in order to quell the demonstrations taking place outside Parliament. Several demonstrators were indicted and sent to trial. Among them, there was two militants of OKDE-Spartakos, members of the Anti-capitalist Left Coalition ANTARSYA.
We are publishing the statement of Greek organization OKDE-Spartakos on the trial of the arrested demonstrators last July 15.
They can’t frighten us-They make us angrier
Today, 28th of July, the trial of the seven arrested in July 15th took an end. Despite the perforated indictment and continuing contradictions of police / prosecution witnesses, only four of the seven defendants were judged not-guilty, while the remaining three were sentenced with unprecedented cruelty, without attenuating for any of the three and the maximum period of probation, which is three years. The process of appeals has already started.
Among those who acquitted is our comrade Manthos Tavoularis, secretary of the workers Union in bookshops in Athens, who was arrested in his attempt to protect his colleagues from the attacks of the riot police.
The hardness of the judges exhausted on sentences of the three activists who convicted. The only migrant worker and punished one, N.L, convicted with the highest punishment for exemplification, apparently from the “left” government, to all those migrants who dare to organize and demonstrate. The worker and member of OKDE-Spartacus and ANTARSYA, our comrade Michalis Goudoumas, also convicted for exemplification and punishment of the Left, which is in opposition and stands in the front line against the Memoranda, regardless of origin. The last activist G.K. and member of social solidarity structures in his neighborhood was punished, because solidarity is the opposite to individualism and social cannibalism leading the affected majority government SYRIZA-ANEL.
During all the three days of this trial parody, policemen witnesses and their colleagues and friends were present, in order to create a climate of terror and fear both defense witnesses and to solidarity people. Complaints of defense lawyers went unheeded, while on the other side there were few times that the “friendly wells” between prosecutor and policemen/witnesses were perceived by our solidarity people˙ at the same time the defense witnesses were not taken into account from the judges, such us the 83 solidarity declarations of unions, social and political organizations from all the world and also the 2700 signatures and personal statements of solidarity that we tabled during the trial.
The government of SYRIZA-ANEL, walking faithfully in the footsteps of its predecessors, proves that it cannot implement new measures of destruction of workers and popular classes and complete the coup perversion of mass class NO, without resorting to the ultimate form of social precedence: State-police violence and repression. The government bears full political responsibility not only of arrests, beatings and torture of the seven activists who arrested, but also for the conviction of three activists. Political leadership of Deputy Minister Giannis Panousis (Ministry “of the Protection of the Citizen”) and doctrine “battery all the hardest you can” and “arrest anyone” is not exclusive only to the previous governments. Nikos Dendias’ police (minister of New Democracy government), has nothing to envy from the police of SYRIZA-ANEL. As characteristically said, during his apology speech, one of the accused: “they were beating us commenting on each other (members of the riot police) that they haven’t felt so well since 2012”. The bourgeois state has continuance, the state repression has continuance and political responsibilities refer not only to the government itself, but every organization and member of SYRIZA, who refused to stand in solidarity and denounce his/her party. “Solidarity under circumstances” has no place either in our Left, nor in the world we want to build.
The government is vanishing every day the last illusions about its intentions as regards to the movement. The government votes new Memorandum in tandem with the bourgeois parties, the experiences of media establishment, the local and European capital, the EU and the IMF. They choose to attack, “releasing” and activating the well-known mechanisms of repression, systematic targeting the youth, workers, trade unionists and political organizations and collectives who gave everything in the last years for the struggle against austerity, memoranda, draft laws and authoritarianism, which gave the battle of NO in the referendum, fighting for the emancipation of the working majority and its liberation from capitalist hell.
The final government’s commitment on the side of the bourgeois political world and capital neither surprised nor frightened. Those who think they can order the workers, youth, immigrants in poverty and violence, will always find us in front of them and will have the fate of previous governments.
Whatever they do, as many trials they make against us, as many fake charges they bring against us, we will be on the roads. OKDE-Spartacus, being at the forefront of the struggle for so many years, will not fear the rigged trials or convictions. We were and we remain at the forefront, against memoranda, the government of SYRIZA-ANEL and any other bourgeois government. We were and we remain at the forefront, against these and any other measures come to affect the social majority. We were and we remain at the forefront in the defense of workers’ rights. We were and we remain at the forefront, to stop the exploitation and oppression. We were and we remain at the forefront of the struggle until we win!