^This guy was just asking the police to leave the square.
(independent.co.uk) … The vote went through in the Athens parliament against a backdrop of rioting in the streets outside as police clashed with protesters opposing more tax hikes, spending cuts and a privatisation sell-off demanded by the country’s international creditors.
And effective implementation will be difficult if an increasingly rebellious public defies the deal and refuses to hand over more taxes or absorb more cuts to pay the price for an economic crisis they say was not their fault.
Nevertheless the 155-138 vote this afternoon should be enough in itself to ensure the handover of the latest 12 billion euro (£10.7 billion) instalment of an EU-IMF bail-out fund agreed a year ago and worth a total of 110 billion euro (£96.5 billion).
Greece has been warned for weeks that the latest slice of the money would be withheld without today’s “yes” vote, allowing Greece to default on its debts within weeks.
Continuing with the payment should now be a formality when EU finance ministers hold a special meeting in Brussels on Sunday to decide the next step.
Greece desperately needs the latest aid by July 15 to meet its immediate debts, but already Europe is considering a second massive bail-out – probably worth more than the first – because of the scale of the crisis and the risk of “contagion” to other struggling eurozone economies.
But the scale of rioting on the streets of the capital and across Greece hint at serious difficulties to come for the Greek government.
AfroditeXig Afrodite Xigorou
Ppl testify now on tv that Greek riot police attacked ppl eating at tavernas & cafe at
Monastiraki sq without any reason. #Greekrevolution
northaura spyros gkelis
urgent, desperate call for doctors to immediately go #syntagma please RT there are
injured people there and rescue team doesn’t cope #29jgr
AlexMaragos Alexandros Maragos
Teargas Grenade: price 11.50€, Maalox: price 2.80€ Greek indignants holding the square
despite chemical war: priceless #Greece #j29gr
(guardian.co.uk) 6.00pm: Artemis, who was at Syntagma Square today between 10.30am and 2.50pm BST, has sent in an eyewitness account of events today. He says there were troublemakers but the police “showed no mercy”. He also says many Greeks believe there were agent provocateurs at work:
I joined the crowd of mostly independent, peaceful protesters at about 12:30. Lots of grey-haired people around, as in every single protest I’ve been to in the last month.
The riot police fired huge amounts of teargas right in the middle of the crowd – more often than not without the slightest provocation. Clearly, they had orders to disperse the protesters at all cost while the 300 Greek MPs were voting on the new package of austerity measures in the Parliament nearby. At some point, some of us were kettled and targeted; some of us took refuge in a building – most of us gagging and wretching; there’s no getting used to teargas, believe me. I have nothing but admiration for those who stood their ground and didn’t leave the Square; without a proper gas mask it’s impossible to stop the streaming tears or indeed breathe.
The police showed no mercy; you’d have thought they suffered from teargas incontinence! What’s the point, I joked to my companion, the austerity measures will have us crying our eyes out anyway – they really are set to cripple the Greek economy rather than help it. Everyone I spoke to – ordinary Greeks, many in their 40s, 50s, and 60s – agreed that the police tactics hardly differed from those applied during the 1967-1974 dictatorship.
The ‘mysterious’ thugs, who, most Greeks are convinced include agents provocateurs, did turn up at some point and broke into a bank – PC monitors, furniture, anything they could grab was thrown into the street (Othonos Street) and set alight. About 500 people seemed to be trapped in the Syntagma underground station, many with breathing problems. Red Cross volunteers provided first aid, but some people had to be hospitalised, I heard. Just now the Greek association of pharmacists appealed to the police to allow emergency services – doctors, ambulances – through the blockade, to reach those protesters in need of medical help.
As I’m typing this, from my parents’ place, about 1 mile from Syntagma Sq., I can hear blasts of, presumably, more teargas and smoke grenades. On the way back from Syntagma I could see a handful of hooded thugs ripping wooden benches and setting piles of scrap wood and rubbish alight in the middle of Panepistimiou Street, outside the Athens university. There were hardly any protesters, or indeed police, around at the time; it certainly looks like those hooded urban terrorists are organised and act according to a plan aimed at sabotaging peaceful protests – an aim obviously shared by the police, and, of course, the minister of citizen protection, who (theoretically) gives the orders.
(anarkismo.net) Bil’in fence is moving and the Ni’ilin one will be moved too.
During the years, the joint struggle against the separation fence and occupation brought some successes forcing the Israeli state to retreat a bit from initial steps of using the separation fence for annexation of Palestinian lands for colonialist settlements. However, the persistent struggles in Bil’in and in the near-by Ni’ilin were in the focus of the media [and in intensive participation of this writer the last six years.] Thus, with huge satisfaction we have seen the beginning of the moving of the separation fence in Bil’in and the media report on it and the coming moving of the fence in Ni’ilin. The relentless joint struggle continues in the heroic Nabi Saleh, in the persistent Ma’asara, in Beit Omar, in the Southern Hebron Mountain region, in East Jerusalem, and within Israel.
Beit Ummar Saturday 25.6.11
The weekly peaceful demonstration in Beit-Ummar set off on Saturday noon out of the village and next to the agriculture zone nearby the settlement Carmei-Tzur. In the demo took part approx 60 participants, Palestinians, internationals and 8 Israelis. The big number of IOF soldiers and border police waited to the protesters on the narrow road which goes up to the settlement (down the area where they usually Waite), but the protesters were smarter and branch out into two groups – one went directly inside the plum’s grove and the other continue climb up on the road and stopped in front of the soldiers. As usually the soldiers used violence in order to stop the protesters, that tried again and again to enter the agriculture’s areas around on the side of the road. After about 30 minutes the soldiers started to use sounds bombs, arrested 2 international activists and one Palestinian young guy, they also took the ID cards from 3 Israelis activists. After one hour the protesters left the area and the protest came to the end. Read More
(Roarmag) Amidst mass protests and an historic 48-hour strike, one ‘no’ vote by a Greek MP could tip Greece into bankruptcy and the world into global financial meltdown.
The eyes of the world are on Greece. Or, to be more specific, on Syntagma Square, where 300 MPs prepare for a crucial vote on the EU-IMF imposed austerity package — and where hundreds of thousands of Greeks will converge to stop the vote from being passed in the country’s first 48-hour strike since the fall of the dictatorship.
There is an uneasy tension in the air in Athens. Just yesterday, Communist protesters stormed the Acropolis and unfurled a giant banner calling for a massive organized counterattack. Today, over 5,000 policemen have mobilized in central Athens to prepare for an epic stand-off with hundreds of thousands of striking workers and indignants.
What is going on in Athens right now is truly historic. Indeed, superlatives aside, it is nearly impossible to describe the gravity of the situation at hand. What happens in the next 48 hours in Athens will determine the fate of the entire eurozone, the EU and — indeed — the world economy as a whole. This is the very climax of the eurocrisis.
Here’s the short synopsis: today, Greek members of parliament will start debating a new round of austerity measures, which are a condition for Greece to receive both the fifth tranche of last year’s bailout, worth €12bn, and a second bailout, worth €80-120bn from the EU and IMF. They will vote on the measures on Wednesday.
Now, if Parliament votes against, Greece will be denied both the fifth tranche of last year’s bailout and the second bailout by the EU and IMF. As a result, Greece will be forced to formally default by mid-July, when several billions of euros worth in three and six-month bonds mature.
In the midst all of this, hundreds of thousands of Greeks are expected to converge upon Syntagma Square, right in front of Parliament, for the largest mass demonstration so far — coinciding with the country’s first 48-hour strikesince the fall of the dictatorship and the establishment of democracy in 1974. Unions have threatened to storm Parliament and physically prevent the vote from taking place.
Constant updates from (Contra Info)
11.00 At the port of Pireus, since early in the morning, dockworkers as well as members of PAME (of the so-called ‘Communist’ Party of Greece) seized the ships’ launchers, blocking the sailing from the central port of the country. In Athens approximately 25,000 people have gathered in front of the parliament, mainly demonstrators of PAME.
01.01 GMT+2 Prisons across Greece: Excerpt of a prisoners’ text about the mid-term memorandum — ‘[…] Prisons are a mechanism which is based on poverty and reproduces inequalities and injustice. Prisons are an unjust and inhumane mechanism which demoralizes and enrages people. It is a class and antisocial mechanism which should be abolished. We know that there is no potential for basic living problems’ substantial solution inside prisons because, as we said before, life behind prison walls becomes even more difficult due to the crisis. Hence, the main slogan of inmates in Greek prisons today is “Immediate release of all prisoners.” Today our own struggle cannot but be common. Common among all prisoners, common among all the oppressed of all nationalities who are in the streets and squares of Greek cities. Let’s start here and now a real confrontational struggle that will prevent the mid-term memorandum’s voting. And the only way to do so is to factually threaten the political and economic system’s function. […]’ This text is co-signed by a total of 468 women and men inmates of the prisons: Koridallos (also F male wing), Ioannina, Avlona, Nafplion and Corfu. At least 789 women and men prisoners decided to remain outside the prison cells during the midday closing in: Koridallos (also A, D, F male wings), Diavata, Amfissa, D1 male wing of Grevena. A total of 1,508 inmates will protest via abstention from mess in: Grevena, B male wing of Larissa, Ioannina, Avlona, Malandrino, Diavata and Cassandra in Thessaloniki. On the day of the mid-term memorandum’s voting, the prisoners protest against the financial and political impasse in which the Greek society is situated, against the country’s occupation by the big Capital, against the parliamentary junta. This mobilization is also held in solidarity with those who fight in cities’ streets and squares across Greece.
About 00.00 GMT+2 Arta, western Greece: Dozens of workers and solidaritarians blocked the entry of the poultry cooperative’s factory of the city. They had decided to blockade the factory throughout the entire 48hour general strike, but the blockade ended at about 4.30 am. Reports mention that lately the employers practice factual terrorism against the workers, intimating them not to participate in strikes. The unpaid workers of the cooperative invite all people to participate in the strike.