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Independent Greeks: provocateurs broke up our protest

09 October 2012 / 21:10:35  GRReporter
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Anastasia Balezdrova

The leader of Independent Greeks Panos Kamenos fulfilled his threat to call a meeting of party supporters despite the police ban. They gathered in front of the Adrianos arch a few dozen metres away from Syntagma Square, where violent clashes between demonstrators and police were taking place.
The meeting of Independent Greeks was interrupted abruptly when some protesters started throwing stones at the police. They responded with tear gas and the protesters dispersed.

A few minutes later, they returned and cheered the leader Panos Kamenos, the party spokesman Terence Quick, the chairman of the parliamentary group Notis Marias and other deputies.
"We knew a provocation was being prepared and so, we changed the place of the protest several times. But those who boycotted our protest should be aware that they cannot break the power of patriotic Greeks," he said into the speaker and sparked enthusiastic applause and cheers.
"We are many, we are independent, we are Greeks," Panos Kamenos recited the motto of the party and then strongly criticized the decision of the police to ban the protests. "Nobody can forbid the Greeks from protesting against the criminal policy of the government," Panos Kamenos said and set the tone for the people to sing the national anthem.
Then, Panos Kamenos urged his supporters to move further down to the bottom of Syngrou Avenue. The cries of a few of them that the meeting should set off in the opposite direction to Syntagma Square were quickly quashed.
After a short standstill when the party leader continued the attacks against the Greek government and the visit of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, the procession was invited to proceed to "Syngrou-Fix" underground station.

This time, deputy Notis Marias gave the tone for slogans. "Take the memorandum and get out of here," "The loan you took during the Occupation is soaked with Greek blood" and "All mercenaries - in prison," were the slogans they were shouting.
When the procession reached the underground, Panos Kamenos made another impassioned statement, which was much shorter than the previous two and then, he invited the protesters to "go down in the underground to go home safe" and assured them that the members of the party leadership would personally protect them from provocations.

Many people were disappointed because they expected, "We'll try to get to the German embassy at least. Why did you bring us here otherwise? Was it to watch him making statements before the cameras? "a woman with a large flag in her hands was crying. She calmed down only when she saw some participants in the protest sitting on the tarmac. At the same time, the majority of people were withdrawing to the underground stairs and the protest gradually ended.
Although Panos Kamenos did not name the "provocateurs," who had initially broken up the protest, his supporters said that those were members of EPAM (Revolutionary defensive front) - the party that had formed during the protests of the discontented. "They have shown that they are people of the system. It uses them to suppress the protests of free thinking and irreconcilable Greeks," one of them said on his way home.

It is interesting in this case, that the Independent Greeks were ready to form a coalition with EPAM before the election on 6 May but the cooperation failed at the last moment.
A delegation led by Panos Kamenos still went to the German embassy earlier today. Having failed to hand the protest manifesto to any representative, they stuck it at the entrance, sang the national anthem and left.
Several hours later, Panos Kamenos sent to the head of Greek police a notarized letter of protest in which he blamed him for the ban on protests.

Tags: PoliticsSocietyIndependent GreeksProtestsPanos Kamenos
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