Report from Thessaloniki 2003
(, 21.06.2003 15:42

Both Athens and Thessaloniki Indymedias continue to be down. Here is a translated report from Thessaloniki, by way of Politiko Kafenio, June 20

The terror state, with its thousands of police, port controls, army and airforce, squad cars, patrol boats and helicopters, even the boats of the sea, - struck out at the thousands of protestors who, today, reached Thessaloniki to protest against the EU, the Government and the Summit of the EU killers. Episodes broke out on the small bridge near the highplaced thugs' hotel, between the police forces and demonstrators from the Social Forum of Anarchists, as well as on the beach against comrades of the Initiative for the Thessaloniki 2003 Struggle - who were attacked with teargas and chemicals. The areas around the hotel where the Summit is taking place in Porto Carras resembles HELL! One hour after these events took place, it is still impossible to breathe from the incredible amount of chemicals that they have used in Neo Marmara. This is the Government, this is the State, and these are its operative organs. This State is not becoming 'modernized', it is not becoming 'better', it is not 'amenable' but can only be OVERTHROWN!

Two worlds are confronting one another these days in Thessaloniki. On the one hand, the 'People of Seattle', of Prague, of Genova and Florence, of the megalopoles of Europe, that same world which a few days ago protested against and clashed with the French-German police force at the G8 meetings in Evian. The world of the anti-war and anti-imperialist movements, the world of labor, of culture and of creativity. On the other side, the world of wealth and privilege, exploitation and unemployment, the world of war and of authority.

Thousands of protestors amongst thousands of policemen and forces of oppression. The first large demonstrations took place on Thursday. An anarchist comrade protestor informed us from Thessaloniki immediately after the march that: « The anarchist/anti-authoritarian march on behalf of immigrants was completed. The march passed though the neighborhoods of Thessaloniki. The atmosphere was magnificent, with more than 5,000 individuals shouting and clapping - and the world on their balconies seeing these people who were not merely ten individuals wearing masks. The march's call had stated that it would set off from the Olympiados and Cassandrou junction at 18.00. At 17.45 a huge part of the bloc left from the University and head towards the meeting place. Other people were gathering there as well. At around 18.15 was heard « When the sky clears ». We set off. The goal of our march was to pass through the immigrant and labor quarters, not through the mainstreets. We want the immigrants to hear us, not the television-viewers to see us. We walked up Olympiados and already, from the beginning, it was clear that this march would have rhythm, heartbeat and zest. The slogans that were being shouted out by more than 5,000 mouths were:

We marched through the neighborhoods (Olympiados, Neapoli, Lagkada, Dodekaorofes, Ag. Dimitriou) with our banners, black and red flags and uncovered faces - and in these neighborhoods the world awaited us with their shops open, out on the sidewalks and their balconies. As much as the world around us realized that that we had achieved what we wanted - so much the more spirit and pulsation could be heard in the slogans. In Ag. Dimitriou, we came upon an enormous bloc that the cops had split into an upper and lower section. We knew that there were many of us, but we turned off. The purpose of this march was not that of collision. The slogans changed, and now you could more often hear:

Ilias Z. gave us the following: We set off today for the three-day demonstrations in Thessaloniki, the first day being 'dedicated' to immigrants. Two demonstrations against the EU's immigration policies took place in the afternoon, one at 2.00 pm by anarchists/anti-authoritarians and the other at 7.00 pm by Left anti-racist initiatives and the organized fronts (Greek Social Forum, Genova 2001, Initiative for Thessaloniki 2003 Struggle and Thessaloniki-Resistance 2003). The second protest started at 7.30 from Kamara, by way of Egnatias mainstreet, with a large participancy (about 10,000). Carrying at its head the banner of the anti-racist initiative of Thessaloniki and behind the various blocs of organizations that were taking part, the march moved with verve into Egnatias street, continuing along other roads of the city too, until it reached the White Tower where it finally dispersed. One of the most beautiful characteristics of the demonstration was.the small but passionate participation of some immigrants from Africa. At the front of the bloc, they were 30-40 individuals (including little children) who were protesting from inside barbed wire over which was written 'No to Fortress Europe'. »

At the same time, the Politiko Kafenio web site was attacked by Security hackers who managed to 'hide' the Home Page so that whoever tried to enter its address were taken instead to The Ministry of Public Order!!! (...) This was followed thereafter by the collapse of both Thessaloniki and Athens Indymedias... We received a note from Khayman of Athens Indymedia editorial:

To our comrades at Politiko Kafenio:

Good evening Comrades,

I would like to ask you if possible, because at this moment all the others have left for Halkidiki and I can't communicate with anyone, if you could let it be known - wherever you judge best - that both of the Greek Indymedias have problems and can't therefore publish anything. I'm by myself here at the media center in order to collect the news, and as of now I can't solve the problem, neither I nor my comrades in Thessaloniki Indymedia.There is a small neurosis here at this moment waiting for some news. I hope that you're all well.'

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