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pescao Donating Member (716 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-07-03 09:11 PM
Original message
Protester facing trial starts hunger strike (BBC)

Protester facing trial starts hunger strike

A campaigner facing a 25-year prison sentence in Greece for a crime he says he did not commit has started a hunger strike.

Simon Chapman, 30, from Basildon, Essex, was demonstrating with anti-capitalist protesters at the European Union summit in Thessaloniki in June, when he was arrested.

He was later charged with possessing Molotov cocktails, an axe and a hammer.

But Mr Chapman says they were planted on him by the police, and says he has video evidence to prove it.


Jon Silverman, a former BBC correspondent, has seen the footage and says they support Mr Chapman's case.

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pescao Donating Member (716 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-08-03 03:20 AM
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1. hunger strike day 4
media coverage has been quite good so far, check out these two tv news reports from days 1 & 2: (quicktime required). now we target the greek tourist board...
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Say_What Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-08-03 10:35 PM
Response to Original message
2. Nice to see your name again, pescao
I think of you often when I read about Venezuela and I've been wondering where and how you've been. The US is still trying its best to destabilize the government of democratically elected Hugo Chavez.

Meanwhile, we just elected a groper for a governor in California and Senator Orin Hatch (R) is proposing a bill that would allow foreign born US citizen who have been citizens for 20 years to run for president--and guess who just pasted the 20 year mark--the terminator, ahhhnold. Things here get more surreal by the day.

Good to see you.

From the article: "The lens then switches to the other side of the road where a police officer is displaying an open black rucksack containing the Molotov cocktails, and other weapons.

"Two police officers carry this bag across the road and dump it on the pavement next to Simon.

"The sequence ends with Simon surrounded by three black rucksacks. Meanwhile, the blue and purple one - his own - has disappeared."
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pescao Donating Member (716 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-09-03 11:32 PM
Response to Reply #2
3. hi say_what!
good 2cu keeping venezuela in the spotlight here, i've been keeping a low profile tho i do stop by to check on the meme-pool. after the strike nixxed our emmigration plans in december i've got more into london, tho maybe a visit to the family this christmas if we're lucky. having said that, there seems to be a definite ramp-up in the destabalisation in recent weeks. my conclusion is that until u d00dz show your pResident the door, venezuela's gonna remain hi-risk. the dems at least dont seem to want a major regional war in their backyard, or more accurately, their oil/farm-yard. and as palast revealed, clinton got on pretty well with chvez; i'm sure oprah will, too.

talking of palast, did u read his investiagtion into arnie and ken lay making dodgy deals in hotel rooms? specifically letting the energy crew off $9 billion in fines! wow, and there's davis being hung for an $8 billion deficit! too much...

this is the press release handed out at sunday's demo:

No peace for self-publicist Blaine while British prisoner starves in Greece



We've gone to Tower Bridge today because while David Blaine has become a public spectacle in London by imprisoning himself in a glass case, Simon Chapman has been imprisoned out of the public gaze in Greece for a crime he did not commit. Today, Simon has begun a hunger strike, along with six other prisoners.

We promise: until Simon is free, there will be no peace for this second rate publicity seeker, David Blaine.

Mr Blaine is free to leave his box any time he chooses, but an innocent Briton remains incarcerated abroad, framed up, beaten up and banged up.

As Blaine starves himself for financial gain, seven innocent men are starving for their freedom.

Next year Greece hosts the Olympics. They want the world to marvel at the magic of their Athenian ideal but behind the smoke and mirrors lie political prisoners in Diavatas prison, imprisoned because they protested at the EU's racist asylum policies.

Simon, a graphic designer from Basildon in Essex, was unlucky enough to fall to the ground when one of Greece's riot squads baton charged their demonstration against the EU summit in Thessaloniki on Saturday 21st June.

He was beaten until he was bloody and needed stitches to the head. To add incarceration to injury, police replaced the blue rucksack he had been photographed wearing, with three black rucksacks filled with weapons and Molotov Cocktails. The entire incident was captured on film by ET3 - Greek national TV.

So why have all the prisoners been denied bail?

The Greek public have seen the TV images of police putting a hammer and an axe into a black rucksack filled with molotov cocktails and depositing it at Simon's feet. They have seen the footage of Simon surrounded by police officers with blood pouring down his face, and the photos of Simon wearing his own BLUE rucksack being beaten by the officers.

So why haven't these pictures been shown by the British media?

Now you see them now you don't
In the TV footage, there are NO bags around Simon. Minutes later, three black bags are placed beside him by police who have walked up from further down the street. This is the only evidence the police have submitted against Simon.

On the strength of it, Simon's Greek lawyers have issued two appeals demanding the charges be dropped. Both have been turned down with the judges not even bothering to look at the video or photographic evidence.

Refused bail, all seven prisoners have languished in a maximum security Greek prison and are facing sentences of up to 25 years if convicted. All of them have been fitted up. One, Kastro, a Syrian living in Crete for over 18 years, is facing torture & persecution if he is deported back to Syria. Two weeks ago, Kastro, an artist and leader of the immigrants union in Crete, began a hunger strike against his threatened deportation.

Because of this, Simon says he has no option but to go on hunger strike. We have no option but to support him by any means necessary.
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