Greece: education unionists face down police violence
On 28 February, the Greek Federation of Secondary State School Teachers (OLME), one of EI’s national affiliates, organised a demonstration in Athens against the proposed dismissal of 12,500 education workers by 22 March. This demonstration took place at the same time as the Troika’s representatives were discussing permanent teachers and other public servants’ dismissals with Greek Government Ministers.
Demonstrators underwent a violent attack from the police forces, with 18 demonstrators arrested and four injured and transferred to the hospital.
“We denounce the unprecedented violent incidents caused by the police’s continuous attacks wherever we protest against the suspensions and dismissals, and against the policies of the Greek Government, the IMF and the EU,” said OLME President Themis Kotsifakis, who was among those arrested. “The Government, scared by the growing reaction of workers struggling for their right to permanent and stable jobs, released the forces of repression to terrify us.”
OLME also firmly denounces the autocratic actions of the Greek Government, he highlighted.
Kotsifakis declared that teachers and demonstrators will not be terrified by the attacks and will continue their struggle, so that not a single one of their colleagues or a single worker is fired.
“We are struggling for permanent and stable jobs for everyone,” he went on to say. “Terrorism will not be tolerated and our struggle will continue until the final victory.”