domingo, janeiro 21, 2007

ATHENS report, 17 January 2007: «National demonstration of the Greek Students Movement»

Over 15.000 students from tens of Faculties from Athens and the rest of the country challenged the atmosphere of police dominative presence and repression and demonstrated one more time, massively and dynamically, against the forthcoming Reform of Article 16, which is supported by the right-wing Govenment and the "Socialist" opposition party of PASOK.

Despite the tention that was caused by the provocative presence and repression of the student blocks by the Greek Police Special Forces throughout the demonstration, the thousands of demonstrators managed to conclude the demo by reaching and entering the occupied National Technical University of Athens.
While all corporate media were reporting about "a group of 200 persons covered with ful-face masks, which entered the Polytechnic", inside the University over 2.000 of students gathered for the meeting of the "National Coordination of Occupations and General Assemblies". According to the reports of the National Coordination, 284 Faculties all over the country are under occupation this week!

According to the declaration that was finally adopted, the National Coordination continues to demand:

- The cancellation of the Reform of Article 16 of the Constitution. The preservation of the current constitutional status, according to which the foundation of private Universities is prohibited. The overall cancellation of the reactionary Reform of the Greek Constitution.

- The withdrawal of the draft for a new legal framework for public Universities. The Student Movement gives no permission for the presence of business managers in Schools and stands against the time limitations in study years, the abolition of Academic Asylum, the abolition of free books.

- The cancellation of the already existing, ultra-neoliberal laws for the introduction of a marketized evaluation of Schools and the initiation of life-long learning institutes.

The National Coordination calls for a new round of General Assemblies next week and proposes the continuation of occupations and the organization of massive local demonstrations in every major city, on Wednesday, 24 January 2007. The Student Movement also proposes the coordination with workers' trade unions and invites the two Workers' Confederations (of public and private sector) to organize a general strike, in support of the Educational Movement.

In solidarity,

Yiannis Bournous
Neolaia Synaspismou


1 comentário:

Nelson Fraga disse...

No IndyMedia grego (em inglês) podem ler-se relatos das várias manifestações acontecidas na Grécia neste dia 17 de Janeiro: Against the Revisal of the Constitution Article 16
Demonstrations to defend the state monopoly on the Universities

Revising the Article 16 of the Greek Constitution, in order to allow the foundation of non-state Universities, has long been in the plans of the two leading parties, as a part of an effort to enforce the privatisation of the Educational sector. The Parliament is starting the discussion for the revisal on the 10th of January, and the academic community has already risen up and is being prepared so as to express their contrariety. This revisal is a part of a sequence of revisals of the Constitution, which the plutocracy is about to adapt to their needs. The Unions of the University professors, the High-school and the Primary school teachers and the University personnel have announced a 24hrs strike, while the Student Assemblies that started after the Universities opened for the new year, have already resulted in more than 215 Departments to be under occupation. Demonstrations were held in every big city, all around Greece.

Athens: 7.000- 8.000 took part in the main demonstration, while another 2.000-3.000 people had marched earlier in a separate march of the unions attached to the Communist Party (PAME Association). The people needed a lot of hours to gather, and then started marching after 2pm. A nationalist statue in Korai Square was destroyed, and at about 2h15 some riots occured between the Parliament and the UK embassy. A lot of people were arrested, while newswire reports that policemen planted molotov cocktails in some arestees' back bags. [photos]

Thessaloniki: The march started some hours ago, from 3 separate gatherings. While the march was walking along Tsimiski street, some people set two cocktails molotov controllers in fire. Some stupid reporter tried to tape the action on a professional TV camera and when they noticed him, they chased him; when they got him they got the videotape (after they knocked him with sticks) and then the things got calmer. In front of the Ministry of Macedonia Thrace, a group of students knocked the door down and entered the courtyard. The Riot Police immediately attacked using tear-sprays, batons and a lot of tear-gas. Several minor riots occurred at that place, and a bank was smashed. Though, the march stayed altogether and moved to the University. On the upper side of the University Campus, a group of people got 2 police bikers (in charge of the traffic control) and stoned them (that was harsh...) then they chased them away and destroyed the motorcycles. Most of the people got then back to the University. [photos]

Patra: More than 1.500 people marched in Patra. The demo started from the Parartima and met the separate gathering of the PAME who also joined. Later, the students threw eggs to the Prefecture Administration building; nothing more serious happened, but the march was in a good mood [photos]. Note that a memorial march for Nikos Temponeras (a High-School Teacher who was assasinated by right wing gansgters in Patra, some years ago) had taken place yesterday.

Crete: Heraclio: About 2.000 people joined the march. It was peaceful, while teachers, pupils and other Education staff had joined. More than 3.000 people marched in Chania.

[Photos from Athens]