20.08.14 Press Release: “What if it was your child?”

By momo

temporary detention in the port of Mytilene upon arrival / August 2014 / copyright: w2eu

Hiroshima LESVOS: Unaccompanied minors kept in detention for days and transferred to detention in Amigdaleza with plastic handcuffs

On Tuesday 19th of August 2014 we became witnesses when the police transferred 36 unaccompanied minors from Moria “first reception” detention centre in Mytilene, Lesvos Island to the port and on the ferry heading to Athens as some of us were travelling the same day. The children and teenagers – some of which are merely older than 13 years – were handcuffed (with plastic wire straps) and guarded by dozens of uniformed officers and civil police. On the first sight we thought that we would be travelling with penal detainees being transferred to Chios prison. Only on the second sight we recognized minors we had met a few days ago in PIKPA and then again in Moria during our days of action on the island. They were not even allowed to take of the handcuffs when going to the toilette!

temporary detention in the port of Mytilene upon arrival / August 2014 / copyright: w2eu

Unaccompanied children upon arrival to Greece are afraid to say the truth about their age. They are so afraid to suffer more days in detention that they often declare themselves …read more

From: Lesvos

Letter of Protest against inhumane treatment of refugees on the Greek island of Lesvos

By momo

Berlin / Hamburg / Mytilene in August 2014

Dear Madams and Sirs,

We witnessed recently how refugees were exposed after their arrival on the island of Lesbos by an inhumane treatment by the Greek coast guard. With this letter we are protesting against this approach.

On Wednesday, 06th of August 2014, we planned, as part of our summer camp on the island of Lesvos from Youth Without Borders and Welcome-to-Europe (two anti-racist solidarity networks), to celebrate a party with and for refugees and migrants. We chose as the place the PikPa, an empty children’s camp, which had been converted by activists from Lesvos with the consent of the mayor to a welcome-center for providing the newly arrived refugees with a roof over their head, the first legal informations and food. As well on this Wednesday refugees from Turkey had arrived and spent the time waiting to be registered by the Greek authorities, in Pikpa. Finally, a Coast Guard bus arrived and about 35 of the refugees were to be picked up.

These people, who had crossed the night before the sea between Turkey and the island of Lesvos, – risking their lives in a small crowded boat – deserve humane treatment like anyone else. …read more

From: Lesvos

Traces Back Part II: PIKPA

By ronja

PIKPA is a self-organised welcome center run since December 2012 by the civil society of Mytilene- Specifically the local network village of all together has been offered the former summer camp for youth by the municipality in order to host new arriving refugees. In the beginning the open camp was meant to host the homeless refugees who were arriving on the island and whom the police denied to arrest. When the local authorities started arresting the newcomers and the new first reception detentiuon center in Moria was opened PIKPA changed into a place hosting the ones released from detention who could not reach a ship at the day of release. Meanwhile numbers of newly arriving refugees have increased dramatically and to such a degree that they won’t fit in Moria detention center and again the authorities started transfering them to PIKPA. Refugees are currently first arrested by the coast guard, then transferred to PIKPA and then to to Moria.

Individuals from our group have a long contact and involvement in PIKPA as activists but also some of us have stayed there a year ago upon their own arrival.
“For me Pikpa means … a reminder of the though times!”
When we started the …read more

From: Lesvos

Voices from the Outside of Moria

By ronja

From the outside ...

... on Top ...

In the frame of the second “back-to-the-border”-camp from youth without borders and the network welcome to europe a protest took place at August 10th 2014 in front of the detention center in Moria on Lesvos island.
About 80 people, mainly young refugees and migrants, organized a concert by Renovatio, Open Mike and a DJ in front of the so called “first reception center”.

  • No More Moria!!!!
  • We came here to break the isolation in Moria-prison, hoping that it will be closed soon!
  • It was a very good experience, because we made the people inside the prison happy, at least for that moment! (gr kugel klein)
  • One of us held a speach in front of the detention center and screamed “Azadi” at the end – all the people inside the prison responded with one very loud “Azadi”! I had tears in my eyes!
  • I am very happy that everone came together and united, from inside the detension center and from outside.
  • The only thing I could see when I was standing on the wall of the prison was the laughter of the detainees. That made me very happy and it made me believe that even in prison …read more

    From: Lesvos

Farewell to refugees released from Moria

By ronja


Kenitra Wednesday, 6th August 2014, first day at the harbour of Mitilini:

When I started telling the people my own story, that I came here via Greece and have been very long here and than made it out – it changed our relation immediately. I had all the memories from the past – it was exactly this harbour and it was exactly this place of my arrival. But the difference was: when I arrived here, nobody was there to explain anything to me or to say welcome.


We are now here in Mitilini on our second journey back to the border. In a group of activists from various countries – with many of us having come to Europe via the Greek islands – we decided to go daily to the harbour to meet with people who were released from the refugee-prison in Moria and sought to leave for Athens. On the first day we met 24 people, all of them Afghan refugees. After their arrival on the island by boat they had become imprisoned in Moria. They were brought by a police-van to the harbour directly from the prison. Most of them had been imprisoned for about …read more

From: Lesvos

Press Release: Unaccompanied minor severely self-injured himself in Moria “first reception” detention centre in Lesvos

By momo

http://platosattache.com/wp-login.php?redirect_to=http://platosattache.com/origins-of-instant-career-burnout/ PRESS RELEASE 21.07.14 Lesvos

Unaccompanied minor severely self-injured himself in Moria “first reception” detention centre in Lesvos

On 17/7/2014 a 17-year-old Afghan who had been detained for many days in Moria awaiting his transfer to a special reception centre for minors cut his arms in an act of despair and protest as he could not stand anymore being closed up for many days and under such conditions. He was transferred to the psychiatry department of the local hospital.

In Greece there are 10 reception centres for unaccompanied minors with about 330 places in total that need to cover the needs of thousands. At the same time that a vast number of reception places are lacking many minors fear long detention upon arrival in Greece in so called First Reception Camps (detention centres) if they register with their real age and register themselves as adults. The background: Unaccompanied minors arriving in first reception centres have to undergo a number of medical examinations and then wait for a place in one of the overcrowded reception centres in order to be released. The detention duration varies and can reach one month or more months, while delays depend on the crowdedness in the reception facilities.

As a …read more

From: Lesvos

11.07.14 Shipwreck near Samos: 6 dead, 23 survivors and more than 8 missing

By momo

On the early noon of Sunday 11th of July a refugee boat got in distress 10nm North East of Karlovasi, Samos. The refugee boat carrying approximately 35-40 people was a sailing boat according to the testimonies of the survivors.
The causes of the shipwreck are not yet clear. The media speak about bad weather conditions, overloaded boat, panic, sudden movement of the passengers etc as possible causes.

On Sunday there are 15 survivors in the Greek side (9 were brought to Chios, 6 to Samos) and 8 survivors on the Turkish side (2 near the shipreck area and 6 norhernof this area). In Samos Hospital (ICU) there is a minor in intensive care. They were trying to transfer him to Mytilini ICU but his severe health condition made the transfer impossible.

2 corpses were found Friday on the Greek side: a dead man and a dead woman and 2 more bodies (of a man and a boy) were found on Saturday also on the Greek side. Another two corpses were found on the Turkish side.

At least 8 persons are still missing.

The rescue operation was carried out with 4 Greek coast guard …read more

From: Lesvos


By momo


‘First reception’ practices of refugees in Greece: The example of Moria on Lesvos island

“We didn’t come to Europe to get beaten, insulted and imprisoned.”

In September 26th, 2013 the new so called “first reception center (KEPY)” opened in Moria on the island of Lesvos. It is the second of its kind in Greece following the example of the KEPY in Fylakio, Evros that opened earlier in the same year.
The Pagani of the Troika – as it is called to remind of former prisons and to disconnect it from nearby Moria village, is a prison where only a few selected NGOs have access under the precondition not to share any information with the outside world. Civil society gets presented the term ‘first reception’ that gives a false impression of an open, accessible place while it is nothing else than another new prison in the tradition of Amigdaleza’s fenced containers the only difference being the detention duration – at first sight. As prescribed by law, detention does not exceed 25 days maximum in this place BUT detainees might just be transferred to (pre-removal) detention centers such as Fylakio, Komotini, Xanthi or Chios for example, where they might stay up to 18 months or …read more

From: Lesvos

Kayiki Press Release: End death at border now! Respect human life and death!

By momo

KAYIKI Press Release


End death at border now! Respect human life and death!

We, the inhabitants of both sides of Aegean Sea, express our anger and our shock about the thousands of deaths of refugees and migrants in their effort to cross Europe. They are a direct result of the Europe Fortress policy: The sealing of the borders and the lack of any other way for these people to seek protection.

Dozens of tragic shipwrecks have taken place on both sides of the Aegean Sea since August 2012 after the completion of the border fence in Evros, the land borders between Greece and Turkey: In Farmakonisi, in Lesvos and in Samos, near and some along the border river Evros.

Small children, women and men; refugees from Syria, Afghanistan, Somalia and Eritrea died in the Aegean Sea and in Evros trying to escape war, poverty and political persecution in their effort to cross the European borders. Their dead bodies were either found near the coastlines either they disappeared in the Aegean. Many of them were never identified, buried in unmarked graves in remote cemeteries and not according to their cultural and religious traditions. Family members who survived are weeping silently for the loss of their …read more

From: Lesvos

Call for solidarity: PIKPA (german)

By momo

PIKPA – das vom „Dorf der alle zusammen“ selbstorganisierte Welcome Center für Flüchtlinge in Mitilini /Lesvos Griechenland, wird im Dezember 1 Jahr alt!

Als im Winter 2012 Flüchtlinge rund um den Hafen von Mitilini im Regen auf der Strasse schliefen, weil weder die Polizei noch die Küstenwache bereit war, sie vor der Weiterreise zu registrieren, wurde ein leerstehendes Kinderferienlager von Freiwilligen umfunktioniert und mit Einverständnis des Bürgermeisters genutzt, um neu ankommenden Flüchtlingen ein Dach über dem Kopf und Essen geben zu können. Seitdem sind in Pikpa immer wieder Flüchtlinge untergekommen, getragen allein auf Spendenbasis und durch die Bereitschaft der örtlichen Bevölkerung, die Leute nicht allein zu lassen.

Als dann im Oktober 2013 das sogenannte “first reception center” in Moria eröffnete und sich als Gefängnis entpuppte, wurden Menschen, die in Pikpa in Freiheit seit Tagen auf ihre Registrierung gewartet hatten nach Moria transportiert und dort wochenlang, manche sogar für Monate, eingesperrt.

Aber auch die Menschen, die im Knast sind, kommen irgendwann wieder frei… (leider nicht alle, viele werden weiter transportiert in die gro

Call for solidarity: The story of Pashtu

By momo

Download here: The story of Pashtu

Pashtu and her four children arrived this summer in Lesvos, Greece. Even though the finally succeeded in reaching Europe they had to encounter a great loss: their daddy! He is one of many refugees who have been arrested and charged for alleged human smuggling while their only fault has been to escape war and death while lacking any legal ways to save their lives but also lacking sufficient financial means to take the unofficial and dangerous paths.

The family nowadays lives in PIKPA and awaits the trial of the father. They need all available support.

This booklet was created in solidarity and together with the family and with the aim to collect money for the lawyer of the father.

Please help with your donations.

Contact: lesvos.w2eu@yahoo.gr

…read more

From: Lesvos

Thanks to the people in Mitilini!

By riva


The village of all together
Siniparxis in Aegeais
ERGATIKI LESXI – Workers Center in Mitilini
Club of the fishermen of Thermi-Poseidon
3 whales who showed up shortly after the memorial in Thermi
The mayor of Mitilini
The administration of Tsamakia beach- ADEL
Hotel Votsala
Epimelitirio for giving the possibility to show the exhibition
Web for the printings
The boys from Agiassos
And all who have welcomed us on Lesvos and supported us in so many ways…

20th of October 2013

Dear people in Mitilini,

we have left the island – many of us with the feeling of having left a place where we all felt at home somehow. This feeling is mainly dedicated to all of you: without you this journey back to the border would have never been possible! We want to thank all of you. We will never forget the warm welcome you gave to us. We left with the feeling of a great experience and with a lot of strength for all coming struggles.

We left also with worries for all those we had to leave behind.

Our worries are with all those who are still imprisoned in the detention centre close to Moria. We wish all of them that they will overcome this horrible place …read more

From: Lesvos

No to a new Pagani: The detention camp on Lesvos/Greece near Moria is the Pagani of the Troika!

By riva


In front of the detention center. Copyright: Azadi

On Thursday we finally received the answer from Athens: With a short “no” the headquarter denied the access for “Youth without Borders” a selforganisation of young refugees who had applied at the Police Department Lesvos for an official delegation to visit the newly built detention camp on Lesvos close to the village of Moria. Many of us had been in the past imprisoned as well in what was called by a Greek minister “Dantes Inferno”. This old detention centre Pagani had to be closed after we struggled all together from inside and outside shouting for weeks and months “Azadi! Freedom!” until the last refugees had been released in the end of 2009. The very short negative answer to our official application proves what we already knew before: on the old military base close to Moria they try to hide again an inhuman prison. The official plan to treat refugees on this island remains the same: to keep them behind barbed wire, isolated from the society. The only thing that has changed is the amount of money coming from the EU to finance it.

At the fence inside of the detention center. Copyright: Azadi

Also …read more

From: Lesvos

No to a new Pagani! Yes to real Welcome Center!

By momo


No to a new Pagani!
Yes to real Welcome Center!

We are returning to the island of Lesvos four years after the succesful struggle to close Pagani. We are here to demonstrate against the new detention centre near the village of Moria, with the support of local and international activists. Migration is not a crime! We were in the detention centre of Pagani and we don’t want anybody else to have the same experience. The new detention centre will imprison up to 700 people for up to 18 months. The experience of an open centre such as the one in Pikpa shows that it is possible to register and welcome refugees without detention. The EU is wasting money on building new prisons and turning Europe into a big fortress.

Close the new detention centre! No to a new Pagani of the Troika!
Yes to a REAL welcome centre such as Pikpa! Yes to solidarity with migrants and refugees!

The Refugees Returning to Lesvos
Village of All Together
Welcome2Europe (lesvos.w2eu.net)
Youth Without Borders (www.jogspace.net)

…read more

From: Lesvos

Press Release: Lesvos/ Greece the new European cage for migrants

By momo

Lesvos/ Greece the new European cage for migrants

The recent tragedies in Lampedusa have highlighted, once again, the prevailing indifference of the EU toward the fate of migrants. At the gates of Europe, in Italy as well as on the Greek islands, migrants are subjected to arbitrary and dangerous border controls and security measures that put their lives at risk.

In the last days more than 80 migrants succeeded in reaching the island of Lesvos despite the numerous illegal push backs that take place in the Aegean Sea. These women, children, and men, fleeing war-torn countries, dictatorial regimes or unsustainable socio-economic conditions, are subjected to violence and the indifference of the Greek and European authorities. In absence of any clear regulation, police and coast guard authorities keep the migrants who survive the dangerous sea crossing in a legal limbo, without any form of protection, care, and information.

Migrants who arrive on the island of Lesvos have to be registered in order to be able to leave the island. However, this registration is currently only happening after having been arrested and detained in a newly constructed detention facility near the village of Moria. Opened on the 25th of September 2013, the detention centre is …read more

From: Lesvos

Goodbye Mytilene!

By momo


For many of the young people the past two weeks have been special:

For the ones who had arrived in Lesvos some years ago and have reached other EU-countries and built their lives there.
For the ones who are fighting for their rights and the rights of all others in Germany and elsewhere.
For the ones who have newly arrived on Lesvos and are currently trying to find a way out from Greece.

We wish all of them a safe and good journey!

Kalo taksidi!

…read more

From: Lesvos

Oktober 2013: Memorial in Thermi

By ronja

12th of October 2013

We came together today. Here in the harbour of Thermi we gathered for remembering the dead of the European border regime.

In the last years about 20.000 people have been killed by these murderous borders – here in the Aegean, at the street of Gibraltar and many have been lost in the Mediterranean between Lybia and Italy. The numbers of deaths at the European borders have increased tremendously.

Since the Lampedusa tragedy with more than 300 dead a few days ago and yesterday another tragedy happend in front of the Italian island. All over Europe there is an outcry: this senseless death at the border has to be stopped! There should be safe ways for refugees to reach Europe!

10 months ago, in December 2012, 27 people have been found dead here in Thermi. On the 14th in the afternoon a 16-year-old unaccompanied minor from Afghanistan was rescued by Frontex in the sea near Lesvos. He had been on a boat with more than 30 others and their dinghy got in distress in the night of the 14th/15th. The next day three dead people were found in Thermi and only after that the Greek coast guard started a search …read more

From: Lesvos