Eviction of the protest at Katsikas camp
The protestors from the camp in Katsikas spent the night on the highway. The protest continued this morning, and as more people amassed again on the highway, they marched onto the highway crossing to block all ways. Reportedly, the major came by and told the protestors that they have to leave the highway otherwise they will be removed by force. The protestors insisted on the fulfilment of their demands for better living conditions and the major’s threat was implemented. Riot police violently pushed people off the highway. The people were noticeably in distress, children where crying and people fled the violent riot police back to the camp. However, 27 people were arrested, among them also Greek and international solidarity protestors.
While in the camp in Katsikas the windows of the police containers where smashed, anarchist groups in Ioannina responded quickly to the violent eviction and the detention as well. They occupied the town hall in Ioannina, where the major was therefore stuck. Nobody could enter or leave the townhall anymore. Negotiations went on and around 7pm the detained protesters were all released without charges. Shortly after, the town hall occupants retrieved.
Meanwhile, the fear of deportation back to Turkey spread among the protestors in the camp. They were told by police forces, that all people will be deported to Turkey who participate in further protests. Thereby, the authorities tried to ensure that protest will not re-emerge too soon in Katsikas.
Similarly, intimidation was practiced in Idomeni today. Military planes and helicopters where circulating over the camp for hours. Apparently, this was to intimidate Macedonia/FYROM who has trespassed repeatedly shot tear gas and shock grenades into Greek territory. However, who was probably more intimidated were the people in Idomeni who have fled war and hoped to seek safety in Europe.