Category: Syriza
“Message for the struggle’s escalation” – Militant strike mobilization in Greece against antiworkers policies

Thursday, December 14, 2017

“Message for the struggle’s escalation” – Militant strike mobilization in Greece against antiworkers policies
A message for the escalation of struggle against the antipeople-antiworkers policies of the SYRIZA coalition government was today’s militant strike mobilizations across Greece.
In Athens, the organised by the All-Workers Militant Front (PAME), demonstration began at Omonoia Square and through the city center passed towards the U.S. embassy, as a symbolic action against the recent Trump’s decision on Jerusalem.
The Secretary General of the Communist Party of Greece, Dimitris Koutsoumbas, attended the Athens demonstration.
From very early in the morning, thousands of workers began the organization of the strike by guarding labor places against strikebreaking mechanisms. In the northern city of Ioannina, following orders of a super market chain’s employer, security guards attacked strikers.
Except from Athens, militant rallies were held in Greece’s major cities, including Thessaloniki, Patras, Kavala, Kozani and elsewhere. Below you can see photos from today’s mobilization in Athens, as they were published at portal.
EU Parliament awards the 2017 Sakharov Prize to the reactionary right-wing Venezuelan opposition

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

EU Parliament awards the 2017 Sakharov Prize to the reactionary right-wing Venezuelan opposition
The reactionary, pro-U.S. opposition of Venezuela has been awarded by the EU Parliament with the Sahkarov Prize 2017. On the occasion of this shameful and outrageous act, the Communist Party of Greece group in the Europarliament made the following comments:
The European Parliament group of the KKE condemns the provocative act of the European Parliament to award the so-called Sakharov Prize to the reactionary opposition of Venezuela, the antigovernmental protests of which express sections of the capital with powerful relations with the USA and the EU, thus promoting the imperialist plans to this country and the broader region.
This “prize”, which is recognized and praised by all the wings of the bourgeois political spectrum- European People’s Party, Social Democrats, Liberals, Greens and GUE – New Democracy, SYRIZA, PASOK, Potami- has been proved a timeless tool of open imperialist interventions by the EU. Among those who have bee “honored” with this award are… prominent anticommunists, persons and organisations distinguished for their undermining action against the people, for their multipurpose interconnections with business groups, imperialist centers and their security centers, epsecially of the USA, the EU and bourgeois governments of the member-states. 
This year’s “award” choice marks the EU’s pursuit to strengthen the position of the monopoly groups that serves in the broader region of Central and South America. The European Parliament, like previous ones with respective actions about Libya, Ukraine, Syria, etc, systematically paves the way for the imperialist military interventionso of the EU, alongside her allies, the USA and NATO.
The KKE neither recognizes nor legitimizes this inter-state union of the capital and her bodies to proclaim themselves as supposed guardians of the popular freedoms, supporters of reactionary mechanisms of the capital and institutions of imposing “democratic values”. Our Party has, timely and documented, positioned itself about the developments in Venezuela and spoke about the sharpened problems generated by the capitalist way of development against the working class and the popular strata. 
The KKE constantly and over time condemns every foreign imperialist interventions. It stands in solidarity with the people of Venezuela and supports their inalienable right to choose their own way of development, against every kind of antipeople policy, in order, through their organised struggle,to be relieved from the yoke of capitalist exploitation, taking in their own hands the authority and the wealth they produce. 
Source: / Translation: In Defense of Communism.
Greece: Everyone in the strike of December 14th – Le 14 décembre tous à la grève partout!
| December 12, 2017 | 8:04 pm | Announcements, Labor, PAME, Syriza | No comments

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Greece: Everyone in the strike of December 14th – Le 14 décembre tous à la grève partout!
All in the strike rallies in all cities! We fight back!
Let’s give a militant response to the new measures of impoverishment of the working people!
The positive climate that the government of SYRIZA – ANEL is trying to cultivate all along this time through the tale of the “just development” does not contain anything positive for the working people, since a new wave of anti-popular measures is being planned. The “just development” that the government promotes and defends, means further assault on the life of the working-people family with further abolition of rights and advances.

The measures of the 3rd IMF-EU-ECB assessment, which are preparing to implement silently, among the dirt and scandals that are rising to conceal the new attack, target “workers” matters with new cuts in pensions and social benefits, the launch of electronic auctions for the “red” loans to banks.
At the same time, the data contained in the new budget plan show what it means for the workers the promotion of the measures for the recovery of the profits of business groups. The swelling of the primary surpluses means further intensification of the exploitation for the workers. The final draft budget provides new privileges and bonuses for monopoly groups with “hot” money but also an extra blow to the workers-popular income, with the escalation of “tax-grabbing” and cuts, seizures and auctions, privatizations.
At the same time, the SYRIZA – ANEL government is preparing to make real a constant longing of big employers and to give another serious blow to the workers’ trade union movement, by attacking the organization of workers’ struggles and demands, by giving a blow to the right to strike and to trade union action, to organization and action of workers.
The SYRIZA-ANEL government in these circumstances strengthens the repression and authoritarianism against worker-popular protests. Supermarket workers in Ioannina, students and workers outside the Ministry of Education, as well as protesters against bank seizures were persecuted, arrested, they received violent repression and chemicals.
Enough with the lies, the delusions, the meagre life!
We take the case of organizing the fight and the success of the strike in our hands. We send away the compromised and sell-out union leaderships that have neither the will nor the orientation to organize a movement against the demands of business groups, competitiveness, the measures that support the profitability of monopolies.
We call on the trade unions to make decisions to participate, to organize meetings, discussions in the workplace, to make decisions in the industries, in the factories.
We call on workers to respond to the anti-popular agreements, to the new bankruptcy plans for workers. To take part massively in strike rallies addressed by PAME in all cities, on December 14th.
We demand to:
• Sign a National General Collective Agreement and restore with law the salary of 751 euros for those paid with the basic salary as the minimum basis for increases in the lower salary. Lower wage at 33.57 euros.
• Abolish with law the humiliating salaries of hunger of € 586 and € 511, and no worker to take less than € 751.
• Restore Sectoral Agreements.
• Immediately abolish all anti-workers laws that crash the Collective Agreements. Collective Agreements that apply to all and be obligatory. Implementation of the continuing effect until the signing of a new Collective Agreement without any time restriction.
• No to the anti-workers changes that impede the functioning of trade unions, which obstruct the proclamation of strikes and the development of workers’ struggles and demands.
• Tax-free limit per person of 20,000 euros, plus 5,000 euros for each child. Remove ENFIA (the tax for residence) and all the extra taxes.
• Prohibition of auctions for the working-popular family. No house in the hands of a banker!
* * *
PAME:  Le 14 décembre tous à la grève partout!
Passons à la contre-offensive!
Donnons une réponse combative et militante aux nouvelles mesures d’appauvrissement des travailleurs !
L’ambiance «bon enfant» que le gouvernement de SYRIZA et d’ANEL entretient ces derniers mois avec son conte de fées sur la «croissance juste», n’apporte rien de bon pour les travailleurs, puisqu’une nouvelle vague de mesures est dans les plans. La «croissance juste», mise en avant et défendue par le gouvernement, se traduit en une attaque plus intense à la vie des familles ouvrières et populaires avec davantage de suppression de droits et de conquêtes.
 Les mesures de la « 3ème évaluation» de l’économie grecque par le FMI, l’UE et la BCE visent le Code du travail avec de nouvelles coupes dans les pensions de retraite et les allocations sociaux. Les enchères électroniques pour les emprunts «rouges» aux banques y sont incluses aussi. Ces mesures sont préparées dans le silence absolu, dans l’odeur nauséabonde des scandales qui apparaissent ici et là pour dissimuler l’attaque.
 Dans le même moment, les chiffres présentés dans le projet de Budget pour 2018, illustrent en quoi se traduit pour les travailleurs l’implémentation des mesures visant la reprise des profits de grands groupes. Le gonflement des «excédents primaires» signifie l’intensification de l’exploitation des travailleurs. Le projet du Budget envisage encore de nouveaux privilèges et de nouveaux «cadeaux» aux grands groupes et une nouvelle attaque contre les revenus populaires-ouvriers, avec plus de taxes et de coupes, avec des confiscations et des ventes aux enchères, ainsi que des privatisations.
 Le gouvernement de SYRIZA-ANEL se prépare à réaliser encore une des vœux du patronat en portant encore un coup significatif au mouvement syndical ouvrier avec l’attaque contre l’organisation des luttes ouvrières et les revendications ouvrières, l’attaque contre la grève et l’action syndicale, contre l’organisation et l’action des travailleurs.
 Le gouvernement de SYRIZA-ANEL intensifie, dans ces conditions, la répression et l’autoritarisme contre les mobilisations ouvrières-populaires. Les travailleurs des supermarchés dans la ville d’Ioannina, les étudiants et les travailleurs aux logements étudiants devant le Ministère de l’Education ou encore ceux manifestant contre les confiscations des maisons par les banques, ils ont tous subi une violente répression avec des persécutions, des arrestations et des charges de la police anti-émeute.
 Ça suffit avec les mensonges et la vie «au minimum» !
 Nous prenons l’organisation de la lutte et la réussite de la grève entre nos mains. Nous mettons de côté les dirigeants syndicaux du compromis ou rachetés par le patronat, qui n’ont pas l’intention d’organiser le mouvement contre les exigences des grands groupes, contre la compétitivité et les mesures soutenant la rentabilité des monopoles.
Nous appelons les organisations syndicales à faire voter des résolutions de participation à la grève par branche et par usine, en organisant des assemblées générales et des discussions avec les travailleurs.
 Nous appelons les travailleurs à donner une réponse aux négociations contre le peuple et aux nouveaux plans d’appauvrissement des travailleurs. Nous les appelons à participer massivement aux rassemblements du PAME dans toute la Grèce, le 14 décembre.
 Nous exigeons:
  • Convention Collective Nationale et rétablissement, par loi, du SMIC à 751 euros comme la base de départ pour des augmentations au SMIC. Rémunération journalière minimale à 33,57 euros.
  • Suppression, par loi, des abominables salaires de faim de 586 et 511 euros. Aucun travailleur ne doit gagner moins que 751 euros par mois.
  • Rétablissement des accords de branche.
  • Suppression immédiate des toutes les lois contre les travailleurs qui écrasent les Conventions Collectives. Nous demandons que leur portée soit globale et que leur application devienne obligatoire pour tous les patrons. Extension indéfinie de la période de validité de l’accord après sa fin jusqu’à ce qu’un nouvel accord survienne.
  • Non aux changements anti-ouvriers limitant considérablement le fonctionnement des syndicats, qui entravent les grèves et le développement des luttes des travailleurs et celui de leurs revendications.
  • Abattement fiscal familial à 20.000 euros, augmenté de 5000 euros pour chaque enfant. Suppression de la taxe d’habitation (ENFIA) et d’autres taxes du même type.
  • Interdiction des ventes aux enchères portant sur les maisons des familles ouvrières-populaires. Aucune maison dans les mains des banquiers !
Tsipras and Erdogan, both enemies of the working class in Greece and Turkey

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Tsipras and Erdogan, both enemies of the working class in Greece and Turkey
By Nikos Mottas.
The visit of the Turkish President Erdogan in Greece has concluded. A lot of things were said in front of cameras and, certainly, even more behind closed doors. We could write about several conclusions regarding the undisputable upgrade of Ankara’s assertions against Greece’s sovereign rights, the unacceptable demand for the revision of the Treaty of Lausanne, the pretexts of President Erdogan regarding minorities, etc.
However, if we would like to summarize the very essense of Erdogan’s visit, we must briefly- and clearly- point out the following:
  • Both President Erdogan, as well as the Greek leadership, repeated in their public statements the (trite) wishes about “good neighborly relations”, “mutual respect”, “friendship” and “peace” between the two countries. All these are empty words, taking into account that within the framework of imperialism, within the framework of the NATO alliance – members of which are both countries – actual friendship and peace cannot exist. This is a given and multiple times proven in the passage of history truth. Therefore, with these words, Tsipras and Erdogan do not deceive each other, but they deceive together the Greek and Turkish people.
  • Erdogan’s visit took place in a period when both his government and the coalition government of SYRIZA-ANEL, are facing a series of internal problems. From its side, the AKP government faces serious social and political issues (e.g. Zarrab case, social polarization, inflation increase, devaluation of the Turkish lira, etc) and has every reason to try to disorient the popular masses from the actual problems. The- albeit temporary- change of the political agenda is also beneficial for the SYRIZA-ANEL government which, in the name of the “3rd evaluation”, crushes working-people’s rights.
  • The confrontation regarding the Treaty of Lausanne has overshadowed a very significant aspect of the meeting. This aspect has to do with the economic agreements and business deals between sections of the Greek and Turkish capital. Mr. Erdogan came to Greece as the representative of the strongest part of the Turkish bourgeois class, whose interests he wishes to promote. It is certain that the working people on both sides of the Aegean have nothing to gain from the business between Greek and Turkish capitalists. On the contrary, both governments in Athens and Ankara are moving towards an increasingly antipeople-reactionary way, enhancing, in one way or another, the exploitation of the working masses and the crush of labor rights.
  • Both Tsipras and Erdogan are consciously lying and deceiving their people when they talk about supposed solutions to a series of issues (Cyprus, Aegean, Refugee waves, etc) within the framework of NATO and the EU. It has been proved, in the most explicit way, that these imperialist organisations do not consist part of whatever kind of solution but, on the contrary, they are integral part of the problem. It is therefore clear that within the Euroatlantic framework no issue can be solved for the benefit of the people, taking into account that these matters are inseparably linked to powerful inter-imperialist competitions, totally foreign to peoples’ interests.
Given the above and on the background of the Greek government’s dithyrambs about Erdogan’s “historic visit”, we bring in our minds the words of the great communist poet Nazim Hikmet who, in August 1952, in a letter addressed to his “Greek brothers”, were talking about “Two Turkeys and two Greeces”. The real and the fake. The independent and the slavish one.
Today, there is the Turkey of Erdogan, AKP and the kemalist bourgeois opposition, but also the Turkey of the working people who are facing persecutions, repression and capitalist barbarity. Likewise, there is the Greece of Tsipras, Mitsotakis and the bourgeois parties, but also the Greece of the working-people’s movement which resists to the strategy of the capital.
Today, there is the Turkey of a handful of monopolies- modern sultans- which are exploiting the wealth produced by the Turkish people, as well as the Turkey of the poor neighborhoods of Istanbul, of the labor unions, of the Turkish communists who struggle in very adverse conditions. On the other side of the Aegean, there the Greece of the wealthy large industrialists and shipowners, as well as the Greece of the workers, of the strikers, of the poor strata.
The actual meaning of the Greek-Turkish friendship will never be expressed by any Tsipras or Erdogan. This meaning was expressed, in a unique way, by the great Nazim Hikmet: “The people of Turkey and Greece give a totally different meaning to the Greek-Turkish friendship. For them, the friendship means a common struggle for the freedom of their homeland. For national independence, for the happiness, in order to be able to taste side by side in the fraternal table of friendship, the bread and the olives of their own country.”
Originally published in Greek in
* Nikos Mottas, a Phd student, is the editor-in-chief of In Defense of Communism
Statement by the KKE on the visit of Turkish President Erdogan in Greece: “People in both countries must be vigilant”
| December 8, 2017 | 8:27 pm | Communist Party Greece (KKE), Greece, Syriza, Turkey | No comments

Friday, December 8, 2017

Statement by the KKE on the visit of Turkish President Erdogan in Greece: “People in both countries must be vigilant”
On the occasion of the official visit of the President of Turkey Rejep Tayyip Erdogan in Greece (7-8 December), the Press Office of the CC of the Communist Party of Greece issued the following statement:
“The visit of the President of Turkey T.Erdogan in our country did not confirm whatsoever the environment that the SYRIZA-ANEL government was uncourteously cultivating during the previous days by naming the visit as “historical”. After all, it wouldn’t be different, when only within 2017 the violations of the Greek airspace and maritime waters are thousands, while just before his visit, during an interview, the President of Turkey restored all the new provocations and assertions against the country, with the peak being the demand for the revise of the Treaty of Lausanne. 
Moreover, the Erdogan visit gave the opportunity to the Turkish leadership, which occupies the 40% of Cyprus and has now invided in Syrian territories, to set the total framework of the Turkish demands, through the revision of the Lausanne Treaty, to project its persistence on the “grey zones” in the Aegean, to intervene in Thrace thus seeking the utilization of the muslim minority- which is comprised by Greek citizens- for the benefit of the interests of the Turkish bourgeoisie also according to the practice it follows in other regions of the Balkans and the Middle East.
Practically, the visit prepared by the SYRIZA-ANEL government upgraded Turkey’s assertions against the sovereign rights of our country and this poignant result cannot “washed out” by the promotion of economic agreements between parts of the Greek and Turkish capital from which the people have nothing to win. 
The KKE estimations are confirmed and once again it is proved that the integration and connection of the two countries in the imperialist organisations of NATO and the EU do not help peace and security for the people. The government, as well as the other bourgeois parties that support the Euroatlantic and capitalist “one-way” route of the country bear responsibility because they misdirect the people that, within round-tables and businesses, the problems will be solved for the benefit of the people. 
Our people must not be content with the fairy tales that SYRIZA and the other bourgeois parties are saying that supposedly through diplomatic manipulations- either through “zeibekiko” dances, “best man” relations* or through the development of various business plans- will overcome problems that are connected to deeper causes and powerrful competitive interests. 
The working people, the people in both countries, must be vigilant, because the imperialist war, which is waged for the profits of monopoly groups, is, like economic crises, nextricably bound up with this barbaric capitalist system.
The struggle of the people needs to be strengthened in both sides of the Aegean, in order to counterfight nationalism, every intent for border change, every change of international treaties that leads to the bloodshed of the people. The struggle must be strengthened, so that the conditions will be created to end, once and for all, the causes that create war”.
Source: / Translation: In Defense of Communism.
* Note by IDC: In June 2001, the then Greek Foreign Minister George Papandreou had performed a zeibekiko dance, in front of his clapping Turkish counterpart Ismael Cem, on the sidelines of a meeting. A few years later, Greek Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis attended the wedding of the son of the then Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan, being one of the groom’s “best man”. 
General Strike on December 14th in Greece – Workers to give a powerful response to SYRIZA government
| December 7, 2017 | 8:19 pm | Announcements, Greece, PAME, Syriza | No comments

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

General Strike on December 14th in Greece – Workers to give a powerful response to SYRIZA government
Last week in Greece, the working class witnessed a series of incidents that showed a strong escalation of state oppression and employers’ intimidations against workers
The workers of supermarkets in Ioannina, the students and the workers of the Universities, outside the Ministry of Education, but also the protesters in the courts against the banks auctioning off peoples’ homes, were not the first to suffer persecutions, arrests, violent repression and tear gas.
The over 18 months unpaid workers of the super markets of Ioannina who struggle for their right to work and their salaries, the students who in the year 2017 literally demand a decent meal and the workers who protect their homes, were within a few hours targeted by the SYRIZA-ANEL government.
Intimidation in the workplace with threats, blackmails, repression and arrests, the planned attack against the right to go on strike and trade union action, as well as the public prosecution of the anti-auction mobilizations, are key aspects of the doctrine of “law and order” and are an indispensable ingredient to the so-called “fair development” that the government is promoting to support the business groups with money and privileges.
PAME, the class trade union movement does not fear the threats and repression. We strengthen the resistance in every industry and workplace, we unite them in a general confrontation with the employers and the government, with the exploitation system that crashes our lives. Only the power of the organization, of the struggle against the escalating anti-workers policy can create obstacles to the attack of the business groups and the government of SYRIZA-ANEL, to the escalation of the state violence and employers’ intimidations.
Our response must be given with the massive participation of the working people in the national general strike on December 14th.
KKE sends powerful message to Tsipras’ government: “The right to strike is non-negotiable, don’t dare to touch it!”

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

KKE sends powerful message to Tsipras’ government: “The right to strike is non-negotiable, don’t dare to touch it!”
Regarding the SYRIZA-ANEL government’s amendment about the right to strike- which provoked the militant response of Trade Unions and workers – the Press Office of the CC of the Communist Party of Greece issued the following statement:
“The SYRIZA-ANEL government broke any record of political impudence and nastiness, bringing, like a thief in the Parliament – and within an irrelevant law proposal in order to vote it quickly- an amendment in order to begin the rupture of the working class’ biggest conquest, which is the right to strike. 
It is a ruthless government, which has no inhibition in order to serve the interests of the capital, a solid pursuit of which is to hit the right of strike, so that “cemetery silence” will prevail in labor places. For that reason, the government receives the congratulations of her “partners” in the EU, for that reason it quickly finishes the antiworker-antipeople “evaluations”. The right to strike, which was conquered with blood and sacrifices, is non-negotiable and whoever dares to touch it will face the working people and the class movement.
The KKE calls the working people to strengthen their struggle, to be from tomorrow and everyday out in the streets, to thicken the strike mobilizations during the next days, with the peak being the nationwide strike of December 14th. 
Source: / Translation: In Defense of Communism.