Sacked Athens cleaners daily pickets

Sacked cleaners of the Greek Finance Ministry picketing the Vouli (Greek parliament) last Saturday
Sacked cleaners of the Greek Finance Ministry picketing the Vouli (Greek parliament) last Saturday

THOUSANDS of workers and students rally every evening to the ERT building (State TV and Radio corporation) in an Athens suburb demanding the withdrawal of the riot police who stormed the workers’ occupation last Thursday morning.

ERT journalists and technicians organise every evening a 9 o’clock news television programme which is broadcast from the street outside the gates of the building surrounded by riot police.

Last Saturday night, riot police pushed away from the gates several parliamentary deputies of the Coalition of the Radical Left party (SYRIZA) who were demanding to enter the ERT building to see the operation of state security forces inside the building.

The riot police storming of the occupied ERT last Thursday is yet another violent dictatorial act by the parliamentary junta of Prime Minister Antonis Samaras.

Meanwhile, the EC-IMF-ECB troika representatives who are in Athens are dictating terms to the Greek coalition government over next year’s Budget concentrating on mass sackings, in both the private and public sectors, and heavier taxation of workers, small farmers, professionals and shop keepers.

The sacked cleaners of the Finance Ministry are continuing their fight with daily pickets at the Ministry building in central Athens as well as outside the Vouli. They are bitter and furious that they are left to fight alone with no support from the GSEE or ADEDY trade union federations.

Also, last Saturday, rallies and demonstrations took part in several Greek cities as part of a ‘protest day against gold mining’ in the Khalkidiki area of northern Greece. In Athens about 1,000 people marched to the El Dorado Gold company offices and in Salonica over 5,000 marched from the city centre to the local ERT building in recognition of a common fight against the government.

A court in Athens last Friday declared the strike against mass sackings by the administrative workers of Athens University and of Athens Polytechnic ‘illegal’ on a technicality. But administrative workers voted in their general union meetings to continue their strike for the 10th consecutive week.