posted on 9th July
For the past 6 days Syrian families are protesting homelessness by staging a sit-in outside the headquarters of the N.G.O Praxis on Stournari street, Athens. The refugees who mainly came from the concentration camps in Drama, Mytilene and Idomeni have been given asylum in Greece and following a meeting with the U.N. they were encouraged to seek help from Praxis.
Yesterday, on the 8th of July, they decided to occupy the street in front of the HQ of the NGO and block traffic. Solidarity activists got to the area around 16:00 and mobilized accordingly.
When Praxis employees were about to close the office at 19:00 the approximately 30 Syrian refugees along with activists blocked the entrance for about half an hour and during the departure of the stuff comments in irony were made about the humanitarian work of the N.G.O.. Two hours later the refugees stopped the roadblock for safety reasons. We informed them that it is possible to get them to a safe place at least for the weekend but they chose to continue their struggle and stay at Praxis so they would remain visible, as they said.
More and more activists joined in as the time went by and by early morning hours around 30 people had gathered. Most of them slept on the street with the refugees. We provided them with food and water from the moment we got there. During our conversations with the refugees they seemed well aware of the role of Praxis and the generous funding it receives for its work.
We call on individuals and collectives to join the refugees’ struggle.
Open assembly to organize events for the reinforcement of the struggle and the forthcoming mobilizations that will take place on Saturday afternoon and Sunday.
FREE IMMIGRANTS AND REFUGEES
We were also told by members of the Union of Front Line NGO Employees that the day before yesterday Praxis officials annoyed by the occupation announced they will close the blinds with the excuse that they cannot assist any more immigrants and called employees to continue their work. The majority of workers reacted against this decision and stormed out in protest until the decision was revoked.
Immigrant families are on the 8th day of sleeping rough at the HQ of the NGO Praxis on Stournari street in Athens and continue their struggle with a clear intention to have their demands satisfied. Our main priority is to reinforce their visibility and give them a platform so their voices can be heard. The following text was written by them and was translated in order to have it published in the counter-information media.
“We are from
We only demand a place to stay and safety for our children from the dangers we saw in the camp.
Our demands are:
1)a place/house 2) safety and 3)protection for our children
For 7 days now we’ve been staying and sleeping in the streets. Among us there are sick women and children with medical records, but PRAXIS doesn’t seem to care. We don’t want to be treated as things. We’ve been sent from PRAXIS to the UN and back asking for our rights. This is not human, we just want our rights. We need a safe place.”
We call for people in solidarity to join the struggle.