Saloniki 7: The State won't give up that easily...

The following article appeared on "Eleutherotipia", an Athens daily that could be described as a Guardian- equivalent. It brings bad (but also expected) news: The Greek State doesn't give up and with new, ridicilous claims tries to fit up Simon and the rest of the Saloniki 7. Will we let them do it? PLEASE NOTE: What follows is a translation of the article, as genuine and precise as possible. No comments have been added and no info has been altered.

"Public investigation regarding the Saloniki 7? perhaps, if, but…"

Eleutherotipia: 02.12.03

The Ministry of Public Order awaits the decision of the Council of Judges of Thessaloniki, in order to decide if it will investigate claims that the Briton Simon Chapman was framed by the police.

The minister of Public Order G. Floridis made it clear yesterday that Chapman is charged with four offenses, of which two are rated as felonies- but none of them is related to the possession or non-possession of any rucksack.

Regarding the statement of the ex-secretary of PASOK (the governmental party) K. Laliotis, who claimed the police framed people, Mr. Floridis said he had already given his reply. When asked if K.Laliotis required his ministry for an official briefing on the case, G. Floridis said Laliotis hadn't done so.

A special report by the police division that handled the Chapman case, presents the version of the Greek Police on the events, as well as the recent accusations against it. The report amongst others states:

”Following the end of the known incidents of 21-6-2003 various demonstrators, in order to get rid of objects whose possession falls in the breaking of the Law, and in order to avoid their possible arrest during their chasing by the police forces, abandoned or hided some rucksacks full of already mentioned objects. These were collected either by policemen or citizens who handed them to the policemen and were then transferred to the Police Headquarters in Thessaloniki; in total, 20 rucksacks were confiscated.

-The already mentioned confiscated rucksacks were sent to the competent authority of Northern Greece which, in its replying document states that the blue rucksack contained the following:

(a) three extemporaneous (hand-made) molotov bombs, each of them consisting of a glass bottle with inflammable material and cloth soaked in it, (b) the remainings of three extemporaneous bombs, (c) two empty glass bottles (d) a “HIGH ENDURANCE” deodorant, a box of matches writing “WELCOME BREAK” on it, (e) a toothbrush, (f) a bag of pipe tobacco, (g) a pack of sweets labeled "MANDARIN ORIENTAL", (h) a baton made out of bamboo stick, (i) an information leaflet of the Athens Airport El. Venizelos, (j) a copy of the SCHNEWS newspaper, (k) four pieces of pavement stone of various sizes.

Fingerprints belonging to the detainee (CHAPMAN) were found on the informational leaflet of the Athens Airport.

- All the above evidence has been sent to the relevant magisterial authorities.

-It is estimated that:

a)the person in question had two rucksacks (black and blue),
b)the demonstrators swapped rucksacks in order to hide their characteristics, in the case of arrest, knowing that in countries abroad, technical equipment is used for their identification (video capturing etc).
c)When they estimated that they would definitely be arrested, they threw the evidence on the street, in bins etc and threw away whatever they had in their hands (hammers etc.)

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