Refugees and racism in Greece update


This video from Greece is called Farmakonisi, Greece: Fortress Europe kills, even children (subtitles: Greek, English, French, Italian and Spanish).

From Ekathimerini daily in Greece, Wednesday February 19, 2014:

Another body found off Farmakonisi, taking total to 10

The bodies of three of the undocumented migrants who drowned off the Dodecanese island of Farmakonisi last month were located by coast guard divers late on Tuesday.

A fourth body was also found in the vessel that sank on January 20 after it was recovered by the Greek coast guard on Wednesday.

The bodies found on Tuesday were those of two boys, one aged between 1 and 2 years and a 10-year-old, and a woman aged around 30, according to the officials.

The body found in the vessel on Wednesday was that of a young girl.

The discovery brought the number of bodies recovered to 10 while one migrant remains unaccounted for.

Sixteen migrants were rescued in the incident, some of whom alleged that a Greek coast guard patrol vessel attempted to tow the migrants boat back to Turkish waters, causing it to sink.

Dimitris Bandias: “I would apologise again for the Farmakonisi incident: here.

Refugees describe dire conditions in Greek migrant detention centres: here.

On Location: Why refugees to Greece are sewing their mouths shut: here.

New incident of violence in Amyygdaleza. Police officer hits an immigrant after asking for a painkiller: here.

Hundreds of Greek Roma held a protest in central Athens Friday calling for equal treatment, better living conditions and free access to health: here.

Golden Dawn’s entire parliamentary group to be summoned for questioning: here.

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Greek loggerhead sea turtle news


This video from the USA is called Loggerhead Sea Turtle Hatching 8-7-10 Gulf Shores Alabama.

From seaturtle.org:

Satellite Tracking

Jairo

Movements and distribution of loggerheads from Mesolongi Lagoon, Greece 2013

A project of ARCHELON.

Species: Loggerhead
Life Stage: Adult
Gender: Male
Release Date: 2013-07-20 12:00:00
Release Location: Mesolongi
Last Location: 2014-02-14 20:52:53

Background

Jairo is named in honour of the Costa Rican sea turtle researcher that needlessly lost his life to murderous thugs while protecting the turtles he was so passionate about.

This was the fourth turtle to receive a satellite tag in Mesolongi Lagoon and the only one that was developed enough to be definitely a male. At 83cm long this was also the largest turtle to get a satellite tag.

Jairo was ‘living local’, then headed 140km south to stay a while off the shores of the SW Peloponnese. Remarkably he has since returned to within 1km of where he was first captured!

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Drowning refugees and nazis in Greece


This video says about itself:

Greece: Families of survivors from “Greek Lampedusa” arrive

23 Jan 2014

A total of 16 Afghan and Syrian refugees arrived at the port of Piraeus, Thursday, after 12 people drowned following an incident involving the Greek coast guard pulling a refugee boat towards the Turkish coast. As the refugees arrived, they were greeted by sympathisers and protesters, some of whom holding banners comparing the incident to the tragic incident in Lampedusa, when more than 350 refugees drowned off the coast of Italy.

Refugees had tried to land their boat at Farmakonisi, a Greek island in the eastern Mediterranean. A total of three women and nine children drowned in the incident. The United Nations Commission on Human Rights (UNCHR) has condemned the Greek coast guard following interviews with survivors, who said their boat capsized while they were being pulled back to the Turkish coast.

From I Can’t Relax in Greece blog:

Migrant drowns off Rhodes

Posted on 04/02/2014 by icantrelaxingreece

Man, believed to be Syrian, died while trying to swim ashore …

The man’s death comes two weeks to the day after a dozen people, including three women and nine children, drowned when their vessel capsized while being towed in a controversial coastguard operation near the island of Farmakonisi, also in the eastern Aegean.

Behind the Coast Guard officers and illegal ‘refoulements’, there is the government which provokes anyone seeking clarifications about the Farmakonisi affair: here.

UN’s High Commissioner Muiznieks expressed concern about the escalation of anti-migrant rhetoric in Greece: here.

The German press speaks of relations between Golden Dawn and neo-nazi organizations from the south of Germany, while it is noted that a delegation of fascist organizations participated in the Golden Dawn demonstration on the anniversary of the Imia crisis: here.

Greece’s Golden Dawn to form new party if banned from polls. Far-right activists say they will form National Dawn to contest elections if they are prevented from standing in elections: here.

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Greek students arrested for protesting ill-treatment of refugees


Greek ‘Delta’ riot police beating up students who were protesting at the drowning of migrants

From daily News Line in Britain:

Saturday, 1 February 2014

GREEK RIOT POLICE ATTACK YOUTH

THE ‘Delta’ mobile Greek riot police units arrested 47 protesting students last Thursday outside the private office of the Merchant Marine Minister M Varvitsiotis in Athens. They were protesting over the Farmakonisi Aegean sea island refugee drownings on the night of 19 January.

Later, students staged a picket outside Athens Police HQ where 46 arrested students were released; one was charged with ‘resisting police’.

Last Wednesday, the Commander of the Greek Coast Guard, Dimitris Bantias, stated at a parliamentary committee looking into the Farmakonisi drownings of three women and nine children: ‘I take responsibility, I ask for forgiveness from the families of those drowned, from all of you, from the minister and the government, from all Greeks, we did the best we could.’

In an open-air press conference last Saturday outside the Vouli (Greek parliament), three Afghan refugees that survived at the Farmakonisi, accused the Greek Coast Guard boat that approached them of deliberately ramming them in order to drown them and indeed the Coast Guard boat, claimed the refugees, succeeded in drowning the three women and the nine children.

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Unknown Sappho poems discovered?


This video is called Sappho, Biography.

From daily The Guardian in Britain:

Sappho: two previously unknown poems indubitably hers, says scholar

University of Oxford papyrologist convinced poems preserved on ancient papyrus are by seventh-century lyricist of Lesbos

Read one of the poems here

Charlotte Higgins, chief arts writer

Wednesday 29 January 2014 19.45 GMT

Sappho is one of the most elusive and mysterious – as well as best-loved – of ancient Greek poets. Only one of her poems, out of a reputed total of nine volumes’ worth, survives absolutely intact. Otherwise, she is known by fragments and shards of lines – and still adored for her delicate outpourings of love, longing and desire.

But now, two hitherto unknown works by the seventh-century lyricist of Lesbos have been discovered. One is a substantially complete work about her brothers; another, an extremely fragmentary piece apparently about unrequited love.

The poems came to light when an anonymous private collector in London showed a piece of papyrus fragment to Dr Dirk Obbink, a papyrologist at Oxford University.

According to Obbink, in an article to be published this spring, the poems, preserved on what is probably third-century AD papyrus, are “indubitably” by Sappho.

Not only do elements of the longer poem link up with fragments already known to be by her, but the metre and dialect in which the poems are written point to Sappho.

The clincher is a reference to her brother, Charaxos – whose very existence has long been doubted, since he is mentioned nowhere in previously discovered fragments of Sappho.

However, Herodotus, the fifth-century BC historian, named the brother when describing a poem by Sappho that recounts the tale of a love affair between Charaxos and a slave in Egypt.

In this poem – though it is not the precise one that Herodotus mentions – the writer addresses her audience, seeming to berate them for taking Charaxos’s return by ship from a trading trip for granted.

Pray to Hera, says the narrator, “so that Charaxos may return here, with his ship intact; for the rest let us leave it all to the gods, for often calm quickly follows a great storm”.

The poem goes on to say that those whom Zeus chooses to save from great storms are truly blessed and “lucky without compare”. The poem ends with the hope that another brother, Larichos, might become a man – “freeing us from much anxiety”.

According to Tim Whitmarsh, a professor of ancient literature at Oxford University, the poem could be read as a play on Homer‘s Odyssey, and the idea of Penelope waiting patiently at home for the return of Odysseus. Sappho frequently reworked Homeric themes in her poems.

Sappho, who was born in about 630BC, is known for her lyric verse of longing, often directed at women and girls – the bittersweet feeling of love, impossible-to-fulfil desire and the sensation of jealousy when you see the object of your obsession across the room, talking intimately with someone else.

She was admired in antiquity for her delicate, passionate verses. The only evidence for her biography comes from within her poems – and the naming of her brothers, Charaxos and Larichos, adds substantially to a sketchy knowledge of the poet’s life.

Sappho’s poems, which were lost from the manuscript tradition and were not collated and copied by medieval monks as were so many surviving ancient texts, have been preserved by two main means: either through quotation by other authors (often as examples of particular syntactical points by ancient grammarians) or through the discovery of fragments written on ancient papyrus. There is hope yet for more poems to come to light, preserved in the Egyptian sands.

Obbink’s article, with a transcription of the original poems, is to be published in the journal Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik.

Only a few poems of the Greek poetess Sappho’s work have survived but thanks to a leading scholar’s investigation two new works have just been recovered—and gives experts hope to find more: here.

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