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TAKE ACTION: Hunger Strikers in Greece Request Support After Assaults

November 06, 2010

Mandana, an Iranian asylum seeker on hunger strike displays her bruises after being attacked

Original Report by IPASCA |
Translated and Edited by Persian2English

November 1, 2010 – The Campaign for Iranian Political Refugees in Greece: On Monday evening at 9:30pm, two unknown perpetrators attacked asylum seeker Mandana Daneshnia, a wife and mother and one of the Iranian hunger strikers in Athens with sewn lips. While Mandana was leaving her house, where she had returned to change her clothes and take a shower, to return to Propylaia with her husband, where the hunger strike takes place, two passengers riding on a motorcycle wearing helmets attacked her with a heavy wooden stick, threw her down, and then fled off. Mandana was injured on her shoulder blade and was transferred to the Giorgos Gennimatas hospital.

This is the second attack within three days against the hunger strikers in Athens. There was also a homemade inflammatory bomb which was thrown by unknown perpetrators toward the tent of the hunger strikers in Propylaia on October 30 at 3:21am. That Saturday night, a tall man driving a black car neared the tents belonging to the Iranian political asylum seekers while holding a handmade bomb. Immediately a Greek couple walking by who saw the man screamed. One of the members of hunger strike campaign came out of the tent to see what was happening.  As soon as the unidentified perpetrator realized that the members of campaign have noticed him, he dropped the bomb and fled in his car.

Provide monetary support to the Campaign for Iranian Political Refugees in Greece. You can send your donations through:

If you reside in Greece: 108/347667-75

If you live outside of Greece:

IBAN: GR5701101080000010834766775

SWIFT BANK (BIC) ETHNGRAA

TEL: 00306959637995

QOBADI RIBWAR

NATIONAL BANK OF GREECE

Campaign member Ashkan Yousefi reports on the incidents in YouTube videos:

THE ATTACK ON MANDANA

THE HANDMADE BOMB THREAT

SIGN THE PETITION IN SUPPORT OF IRANIAN ASYLUM SEEKERS IN GREECE

Earlier, about 2 weeks ago, the members of the campaign described why they are on hunger strike and how it came about. A video transcript was made:

Video Transcript by Roya Irani, Persian2english

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT | Introduction by a hunger strike campaign member: “Today is the 24th of October, 2010, and this is an important meeting between the members of the Iranian Political Hunger Strikers Campaign in Athens. This is Mr. Ashkan Yousefi, an Iranian political activist, who is against the Islamic regime of Iran and has been with this campaign since the 1st of September and has helped this campaign, and we start the meeting with his speech.”

Ashkan Yousefi: “Thank you very much. There is some information about the campaign of hunger strike of Iranians in Athens. About the 1st of September, the Iranian Asylum Seekers came together, about 45 members with 9 children, and they came together and they wanted to have a peaceful strike against the silence of the Greek government about their asylum. They are asking to receive an answer from the Greek government [in regard] to their asylum and they went on this peaceful strike for about 44 days, but unfortunately since, the Greek governzzzment didn’t pay any attention to their requests, even though [the strike is] in peace and had nothing against the government. The governments, they don’t respond and didn’t take any actions toward them. So the Iranian asylum seekers’ campaign finally decided to go [on] a hunger strike stage, as they have announced before, they [will] go on it. So, they did start the hunger strike, as they told me, nine days ago, and eight members of this campaign, including a woman with one child, a man with three children and his family, they started sewing their mouths with stitches, closing their mouths. As a symbol of our closed lips, it’s a response to the Greek government’s silence. So they have sewed their mouths for nine days, and went on hunger strike, besides the children, but the Greek government until now, until today, has not responded at all to their cases and their asylums.

As the days go by, the members of this campaign who are on hunger strike, one by one fall down [as a result of physical health deterioration], especially the members who have sewed their mouths, they unfortunately get weaker and weaker, and especially during the first days when they sewed their mouth, they fainted a lot, then the Greek government did not let them use an ambulance, a public ambulance for the hospital, they had to rent one. Unfortunately, that [ambulance] went away too, after two days, due to lack of money, financial problems, and also the ambulance left them without informing them. So if anyone here, anybody here, faints or has a problem, these people are stuck with this problem of “What do we do next?”. As I was talking with them, most of them, they keep asking from themselves, “Until when can we continue? Until when will the Greek government stay silenced and not pay any attention to us?” because the Iranian Refugees case is different basically than others since we are facing the most dangerous and the most fascist regime of the Earth.

The leader of the Islamic government of Iran Ayatollah Khamenei has given this new law that anybody that does any sort of activity outside of Iran is sentenced to death. So, these people [the hunger strikers] feel no insurance, they don’t have any security, even in Greece, since the Greek Prime Pinister, Mr. Papandreou, has shaken hands with the most dangerous man of the Earth, Ahmadinejad, in New York. Also, when the campaign learned that the Head Police of Greece had gone to the Embassy of Iran, the Islamic Republic, and shaken hands with the Head Police of Iran! What did they have to do together in this country [in other words, what diplomatic relations did they have]? This is the question that all these people [want] answered. This is the most dangerous fear that all of these people [asylum seekers] are facing. Since Greece and Iran have such a close and friendly relationship, they fear that maybe, maybe perhaps the Greece has betrayed them for a bunch of buckets of oil back from Iran. They are scared from this [Greek] government. They feel no insurance, and no security.

They demand an immediate answer and response from the Greek government. They demand immediate asylum from Greek government and if the Greek government cannot take care of them and cannot give them asylum, they have asked the International world, they have asked all of the countries, “Help us. Guide us and take us out of this misery and trouble. They call themselves the Iranian Hunger Strikers and as you speak with the people who have sewn their mouths, they have it said many times, and I’ll repeat it, that on today – all of these people – have not been accepted; [therefore] they will never open their mouths. First of all, we are very concerned for their health situation, since they have families, they have children with them, and also we are concerned that the Greek government will not pay any more attention to them and they ask for an immediate response to their asylums. Thank you.”

EMAIL CAMPAIGN, PLEASE SEND YOUR EMAIL TODAY!

Email To: greece@greekembassy.org, sfgr@greekembassy.org, boston@greekembassy.org, lagr@greekembassy.org, nycons@greekembassy.org, chicago@greekembassy.org, grgencon.tam@mfa.gr, atlanta@greekembassy.org, houston@greekembassy.org, embassy@greekembassy.ca, info@grconsulatemtl.net, toronto.consulate@greekembassy.ca, info@vancouver.grconsulate.ca

Dear Sir/Madam,

Iranian political refugees in Greece have staged a peaceful strike in front of the University of Athens since September 1, 2010. They have a simple request from the Greek government to process their applications for political asylum and to give them an answer as soon as possible.

I am sending you this letter in support of Iranian political refugees and their demands. The Greek government’s treatment of Iranian asylum seekers is appalling and devoid of basic human decency.

In the last two days, the Greek government has refused to provide ambulances to transport sick political refugees to hospitals, Greek fascists have attacked the refugees, and the Greek police during a confrontation in front of the Akademia has beaten an Iranian refugee with sewn lips.

Iranian political refugees have escaped persecution and tyranny in hopes of finding freedom and democracy in foreign lands. In Greece, their human rights have been repeatedly violated by the Greek officials and police forces. I strongly condemn the policies of the Greek government and plead with you to put an end to the suffering of Iranian political refugees.

Sincerely,

[SIGN NAME]

کمپین پناهندگان سیاسی ایرانی در آتن

کمپین، تحصن و اعتصاب غذای خود را امروز بگونه ای به سر میبرد که دیشب ماندانا دانش نیا به علت ضرب و شتم، شب را در بیمارستان سپری نمود.

دیروز غروب 1/11/2010 ماندانا دانش نیا با همسر خود برای نظافت شخصی به منزل مراجعت می نماید، ایشان شب هنگام در ساعت 9/30 دقیقه در حال بازگشت به کمپین، توسط یک موتورسیکلت کراس که دو نفر ناشناس بر آن سوار بودند از پشت سر با چوب مورد ضرب و شتم قرار گرفته و با تاکسی به کمپین باز میگردند، که پس از آن با آمبولانس راهی بیمارستان گشته وتا صبح در آنجا بستری بودند.

شنبه 30 اکتبر، ساعت 3:21 دقیقه صبح، شخصی نا شناس با ماشین استیشن مشکی به محل کمپین نزدیک شد. او در حالی که یک بمب آتش سازی دست ساز با خود داشت ، از ماشین پیاده شد و به سوی کمپین حرکت کرد. در همان لحظه یک زوج یونانی که در آن مکان راه می رفتند، آن مرد را دیدند و فریاد زدند. یکی از اعضای کمپین که صدای فریاد را شنیده بود، از چادر اصلی بیرون آمد و دید که چه اتفاقی قرار است بیافتد. شخصی که بمب در دست داشت، تا متوجه شد افراد کمپین او را دیده اند، بمب را به زمین انداخت و فرار کرد.
این سند دیگری است که اعضای کمپین ایرانیان سایسی پناهجو امنیت ندارند و اگر اتفاقی برای یکی از این اعضا بیافتد، دولت یونان و رژیم اسلامی ایران و فاشیست ها مسئول خواهند بود

برای ارسال کمک های مالی به کمپین پناهندگان سیاسی ایرانی در آتن

شماره حساب بانکی برای ارسال کمک مالی از داخل یونان
108/347667-75
شماره حساب بانکی برای ارسال کمک مالی از خارج یونان

IBAN:GR5701101080000010834766775

SWIFT BANK (BIC) ETHNGRAA
TEL: 00306959637995
QOBADI RIBWAR
NATIONAL BANK OF GREECE

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