Greece: Anarchist refugee squats prepare for State onslaught

City_Plaza_AthensA new spate of recent evictions and interventions by the Greek State against refugee solidarity occupations run by the anarchist movement in Athens has prompted callouts for a major emergency gathering this Friday.

The callout and associated international day of action comes in the wake of a series of crackdowns and repression [1][2] against the solidarity movement, which has helped thousands of refugees self-organise to house themselves and defend against far-right violence since the Syrian crisis began.

It has been supported by six major occupied centres and groups, Oniro, City Plaza, 5th School, Notara 26, Underground Railroad, Spirou Trikoupi, Jasmine School and Acharnon School, which have put out a joint statement on the deteriorating situation in the city:

During the last month we witnessed the State escalating its anti-immigration policy of restrictions against refugees and the solidarity movement. In Addition to the EU management of migration issues which include forcing people to live in horrible conditions ,deporting them and denying them their basic human rights, the Greek government is revealing its totalitarian face by demonstrating its repression power through evicting political and housing squats for refugees. [Read More]

Greece: Refugee-Squats in Athens

201606_protest_athensThe recent developments in Athens are marked by a retreating state, overwhelmed by the task of implementing the EU-Turkey deal as well as the obligatory provision of accommodation and nutrition to ~57,000 ‘persons of care’. In the city of Athens, the everyday subsistence of people, who planned to merely pass through Greece on their way up north, has largely fallen back on self-organised autonomous structures aided by anti-state activists and non-state volunteers. Various squats (occupied empty buildings, most of which are owned publicly) with different organizational features and political aims have popped up on the map. Some serve the need of accommodation as housing squats, others function as social centres, with its activities ranging from the free (re)distribution of goods such as clothing and food items and housing self-organised kitchens-crews to the creation of spaces for political organizing and (legal) info-points. Most of these squats can be found in the neighborhood of Exarchia, with its history of autonomous self-organisation and a strong anarchist movement. But there are exceptions to this rule (e.g. City Plaza Hotel) and the following is an attempted short overview about the numerous squats. Some are well-known, others might be completely unheard of outside of Athens, some have opened up recently in the last few weeks, others have been running for months. It is neither an exhaustive list nor a complete and detailed account of events, but rather an attempt to communicate the very basics about different squats and solidarity-projects and their usefulness vis-à-vis the substandard and insufficient government-run camps. [Read More]