Greece – Prison struggle committee: United We Are Stronger


Necessary note:
This text was written yesterday February 23rd before the abduction of fellow prisoner on hunger strike K.Giagtzoglou by the EKAM (special forces). An abduction which on one hand confirms what we write bellow, but simultaneously proves that when we say that nothing from now on will remain unanswered, it goes twice now. Today was a great victory for the prisoners who believed in their strength, blockaded the prison for 5 hours and united the DEMANDED the obvious.

Each one of our fellow prisoner’s hunger strike is an inviolable right and every attack on one of us is an attack on all.

No retreating.
Until the end, until victory.

In the end of October 2017, began the nationwide mobilization of those held in prison against the fascists provisions of the new correctional code.

From the first moment a the Committee for Prison Struggle was formed, which consists of prisoners from all wings and nationalities.
In this Committee and generally in the struggle of the prisoners there are no greeks, albanians, georgians, arabs but people united who demand the right to dignity.

All decisions are taken under direct democracy and are collective.
A characteristic example is the discussion with a representative of the justice ministry on November 2nd 2017, when it was asked of the committee to stop the mobilization in order for the struggle’s demands to be discussed in a “calmer” environment. The answer was specific, the committee does not decide on the development of the struggle, BUT is the bridge of communication for the prisoners.

In a nutshell it was stated clearly that if it was possible we would like this discussion to take place in prison with ALL prisoners present, and not in an office within the prison.

So the Struggle Committee is not the 5, 10 or 15 people who appear before the representatives, but the thousands of prisoners who signed and support the mobilization’s demands. And of course the collective response to the ministry’s demand to end the mobilization, was a loud and clear NO.

Throughout these months the mobilization managed many things.
It made the ministry visit the prison 3 times and backed down on some of our demands, it spread to many prisons (9 prisons are participating to date), creating new committees, it supported social struggles (like the expanding of visitation for women-men), it protested the death our 26 year old fellow prisoner in Larissa, the voice of the prisoners was heard outside the walls (in radio station, newspapers, events, internet blogs etc.), a solidarity gathering was called outside Koridallos prisons, a support committee was created by lawyers and a press conference was held, imprisoned time was liberated by holding the yards and cells open and we managed to block the onslaught of the new correctional code, placing our own terms in renegotiating our lives.

The main thing is we learned how to trust our own forces and gained self-confidence because our struggle is JUST.

However the militancy, consistency, decisiveness and solidarity we showed all these months, seems to have bothered some. Especially last month, a war of slander has begun against the mobilization entirely, as well as its members individually.
Its not enough we are serving sentences long enough for two lifetimes, cops also load us with every unbelievable charge without the slightest evidence.
The orchestrators of this slander attack with lies and inaccuracies are naturally the police and journalists.

A few weeks ago, a surprise police operation was carried out in the 1st wing of Koridallos prisons and the EKAM abducted our fellow prisoner with the pretext of an “anonymous complaint” about weapons, grenades and escape.
Then this lie expanded since as the police authorities leaked “maybe no weapons or grenades were found… but that does not mean they are not hidden elsewhere…”

This way they leave open the possibility for new police investigations… until they find what does not exist.
Simultaneously they photographed more prisoners (political) who maintain friendly relations with the abducted prisoner, that they arrange contract killings, are behind beatings and anything else can complete a successful dirty hollywood scenario.

Coincidences with great importance…

All these prisoners “happen” to be members of the struggle committee.
Simultaneously, within the internet fog where everyone says whatever they want unsupported, there was an isolated incident of prisoners who also turned against the committee.

But the important matter is that we see before us a strategy being followed to weaken and slander our struggle.

On one hand we have sudden transfers of committee members under unknown conditions (like in Patras prisons), abduction of prisoners by the EKAM (like in the 1st wing of Koridallos prisons), and on the other we have
slanderous publications about execution offices, contract killings, instigation of beatings.
Thus after the abduction of a prisoner by the cops, a climate of fear is cultivated in the prisons since none of us can know how where morning will find us and simultaneously they construct an image about prison that it is a lair… of evil!

But the news will not show is that the death of the 26 year old in Larissa, the forced suicides in Alikarnassos prisons, Koridallos prison hospital and police stations, the lack of doctors and medicine, the cold, the heaters that never worked, the dirty water and cockroaches and mainly the lack of hope from people who when released from prison will return to them because no one stood by them to give them strength and courage.

So maybe the channels speak of criminals, murderers and suite-cells however in reality they are talking about people with no hope, forgotten in cold cells of just a few square metres with their lives locked up for years now.
So we the locked up people managed to overcome differences such as nationalities, languages, religions, perceptions and habits and unite in a struggle to claim back our life and dignity.

No matter how many obstacles they put in front of us, how many traps they set up, whatever intrigue, lies and slander they devise, the path we carve is straight.
We only go forward, wanting to open the cells and yards of all prisons and unite with all prisoners about just and dignity.

And so it will be.
We warn the police and judicial authorities, the journalists and those who attempt to sabotage and insult our struggle, that from now on nothing will remain unanswered.

Abductions of prisoners in the night, slanderous publications and texts, lies and intrigues will be dealt with decisiveness and consistency of struggle we have shown.
From now on the Struggle Committee is more united than ever and every initiative will be discussed by promoting collective co-formation.

And what we said goes.





The entirety of the prisoners of wings 1,2,3,4,5 of Koridallos prisons.

Translated by Act for freedom now!