Greek opponents of Eldorado mine take message to company’s Canadian HQ: ‘Leave us alone’

Anti-gold mining protest — Halkidiki, March 25, 2013

More than 3.000 people chanting slogans against Eldorado Gold marched three kilometres from the village of Megali Panagia to the location where the first clash of anti-mining protestors with the riot police took place one year ago. This was the last in a series of powerful demonstrations against gold mining that took place in the last couple of weeks in Alexandroupoli, Komotini and Thessaloniki, Greece’s second largest city, where an unprecedented 20.000 people chanted “Eldorado Gold go away now!”.

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Greek activists outside Eldorado's Vancouver headquarters May 31. [Photo: Greek activists outside Eldorado’s Vancouver headquarters May 31 / David P. Ball.]

Greek villagers brought their region’s fierce battle against Vancouver-based Eldorado Gold to the firm’s headquarters Friday, marking the end of the activists’ cross-Canada tour opposing open-pit gold mining in their homeland.

Over the past year, a growing conflict in Greece’s Halkidiki region — birthplace of the philosopher Aristotle –has seen thousands of residents blockade roads, raid mine sites, and skirmish with police they say are corrupt and beholden to the company. Another demonstration brought 20,000 protesters to the streets of Thessaloniki.

“Our will will not be curbed,” said Maria Kadoglou, a resident of Ierissos village, Greece. “We will keep on fighting until Eldorado Gold goes away.” Continue reading

Greece: Police in new clashes at steel plant

July 23, 2012
Riot police clashed with protesting steel workers outside a factory near Athens on Monday, in a labor dispute that has triggered a political spat in the crisis-hit country.

Police said they used pepper spray and scuffled with protesters, when about 150 demonstrators challenged a cordon west of the capital. No arrests were reported.

On Friday, police ended a strike at the private steel plant that had lasted nearly nine months, clashing with protesters on a picket line, after a court declared the strike illegal.

Left wing opposition parties are backing the steelworkers’ demands, accusing the new conservative-led government of acting like “gangsters.” Continue reading

Greece: Riot Police Raid Hellenic Halyvourgias Steel Mill

By , opednews.com, July 21, 2012

Greek riot police guard the entrance of the Halyvourgia steelworks factory during a protest, in Aspropyrgos, west of Athens, on Friday

After a heroic nine-month strike that effectively shut down the Hellenic Halyvourgias Steel Mill in Aspropyrgos, the fascist regime in Athens decided it was time to attack the steel mill strikers.

At 5:30am on Friday, 20 July, public prosecutors and rioting police raided the plant, wielding chemical weapons and their trademark brutality, against the strikers. The police evicted ALL of the steelworkers who have been on strike for 9 months, forcing them out of the building. Six people were detained and later arrested. Several casualties have also been reported.

As it stand now, the municipal police are guarding the factory for a private company!

According to a report by ekathimerini:

The police intervention reportedly came at the behest of Prime Minister Antonis Samaras on Thursday night after talks between Labor Minister Yiannis Vroutsis, unionists and the Halyvourgia management broke down. According to sources, Samaras stressed the importance of upholding the law and protecting citizens’ right to work, as well as to strike. “The right to work is sacred and the government will do everything to protect it,” Samaras is quoted as saying. Continue reading

Nepal: “Anti-government protesters demanding PM’s resignation clash with police in Nepalese capital”

Associated Press, June 25, 2012

KATMANDU, Nepal – Anti-government protesters demanding the resignation of Nepal’s prime minister have clashed with riot police near Katmandu’s airport.

The protesters tried to block Baburam Bhattarai’s motorcade as he returned home Monday from a U.N. conference in Brazil. Police beat them back with bamboo batons and shields. Protesters threw stones at the police. At least one protester was badly injured.

Bhattarai has been leading a caretaker government since last month. Opposition parties want him to resign so a new government that includes representatives from all major parties can take over and conduct elections in November.

Police said they detained 34 protesters.

Bahrain boils as uprising nears 1-year mark

Bahrain, January 24, 2012

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Feb. 1, 2012
BRIAN MURPHY, Associated Press
REEM KHALIFA, Associated Press

MANAMA, Bahrain (AP) — It’s usually well after midnight before Bahrain takes a breather.

The thud of riot police stun grenades trails off, the stinging tear gas mist is carried away and the protest chants against the Gulf kingdom’s rulers go
quiet until the next day. Then the cycle of unrest resumes in one of the longest-running — and perhaps most diplomatically complex — chapters of
the Middle East uprisings.

“Egypt, Tunisia, Libya,” demonstrators now shout during running battles with security forces. “Bahrain’s leaders are next.”

A year ago this month, Bahrain’s majority Shiites took inspiration from the Arab Spring to sharpen long-standing grievances against the Sunni
monarchy, accused by Shiites of relegating them to second-class status in the Western-allied nation. Within days of the first protest march, Bahrain
was sliding into a crisis that would bring more than two months of martial law, more than 40 deaths, hundreds of arrests and ongoing clashes so
disruptive that the U.S. Embassy last month relocated workers into safe haven neighborhoods.

But the troubles also reach far beyond the tiny flame-shaped island off the Saudi coast. The past year has turned Bahrain into a crossroads for every
major showdown in the region.

Drawn into the mix is Saudi Arabia as protector of Bahrain’s Sunni dynasty. Archrival Iran is an angry bystander at the fierce crackdowns on fellow
Shiites. And the U.S. is Bahrain’s conflicted partner. Continue reading

Crisis hitting Eastern Europe, massive protests continue to grow

A woman passes by a fire set up in the middle of the road by protesters at the University Square in Bucharest, January 15, 2012.

Romanian PM warns protesters on fifth day

Monday, January 16, 2012

By Radu Marinas and Luiza Ilie

BUCHAREST (Reuters) – Romania’s prime minister warned anti-austerity protesters gathering for a fifth day on Monday that violence would not be tolerated after 59 people were injured in clashes between demonstrators and riot police at the weekend.

The country’s worst unrest for more than a decade has seen riot police using tear gas against protesters throwing bricks, smashing windows and setting fire to newspaper stands and rubbish bins in central Bucharest since it began on Thursday.

Thousands of demonstrators gathered peacefully in central Bucharest and other cities on Monday afternoon, demanding Prime Minister Emil Boc and his close political ally President Traian Basescu resign.

The numbers were expected to rise in the evening and analysts predicted more protests but did not see them affecting the austerity measures passed by the ruling coalition’s small but stable parliamentary majority.

The country had hitherto avoided the kind of violence that has shaken Greece and other indebted European states despite a 25 percent cut in public sector pay and five percentage point increase in VAT imposed in 2010 to maintain an IMF-led bailout. Continue reading

Residents protest against power plant in another South China town

Teargas fired at Chinese protesters in Haimen

Chinese riot police break up protest against a planned power station as state media step up the propaganda war

Villages gather to protest in Haimen. Riot police fired teargas in an attempt to end the demonstrations, now running into their fourth day. Photograph: AP

Chinese riot police have fired teargas to break up a protest against a planned power station, while a state TV station showed confessions by two detained activists in an attempt to get other protesters off the streets.

Footage from Hong Kong’s Cable TV showed police firing several rounds of teargas in Haimen town in the southern province of Guangdong, forcing hundreds of people to flee covering their mouths and noses with their hands.

Hours later, a local TV station carried interviews with two detained protesters, a man named Li and a woman, Yung. Sitting behind bars with their heads bowed and handcuffs in full view, the two took turns to confess. “It was wrong to surround the government and block the highway,” Li said, with his eyes lowered.

“I do not know the law. If I knew, I will not block the expressway. If I could have understood this, I wouldn’t have been so brash,” Yung said, her voice shaking.

In an obvious attempt to end the demonstrations now running into their fourth day, the Shantou TV station also lined up several Chinese legal experts and quoted them as saying that such actions carried a maximum penalty of five years in jail, and urging protesters to surrender.

The protests in Haimen, a coastal town of about 120,000 people under the jurisdiction of Shantou city, intensified this week as people in Wukan village, about 80 miles further along the coast, called off a 10-day blockade of their village in protest against what they said was a land grab by officials. Continue reading