The demo outside the Israeli ambassador’s house and subsequent arrest of George Karakasian and Sotiris Marangos
While the Palestinian people were being slaughtered and humiliated, the Israeli ambassador in Cyprus decided to throw a party to celebrate the anniversary of the founding of the terrorist fascistic State of Israel. Needless to say, the above characteristics are common to all States.
For every fighting person and anyone with any feelings this was a provocation that could not remain unchallenged and a good reason for us to express our accumulated rage. Not only towards the Zionist thugs but also towards all those who, from all the security of their life of accomodation, put victims and oppressors on the same level. Anyone with any kind of dignity was there, not only (as in some cases) to show off to public opinion but to demonstrate that the insurrection against the murderers of the human race and against everything that oppresses us is a reality.
The arrest of the two comrades George Karakasian and Soteris Marangos that night (with the ridiculous accusation of beating the cops i.e. those who regularly beat up and maltreat people but rarely appear before a court) and the first trial that took place on 30/05/02 were aimed at scaring people in struggle and preventing future events such as those which took place that night ever happening again.
The comrades present in court for the parody of a trial witnessed the total absence of all those who claim to be progressive and rebellious but confine their activity to boring speeches.
Such trials ridicule the rotten State, which while speaking of human rights represses people who really fight for them.
Comrade George Karakasian received his summons only sixteen hours before the trial and when he got there he was accused of ‘crimes’ which were not included in the summons! When the two comrades denied the accusations the prosecutor (without even trying to keep up appearances) asked for the trials to be speeded up. And this is indeed what happened. Whereas the other cases in court that day were put off for approximately three months the comrades were referred for trial two weeks later to put an end to things quickly and painlessly and prevent people from waking up from the lethargy of the miserable life that the State offers its citizens with the help of the media.
The comrades who are to be judged on 14/06/02 are not alone because as they themselves know they will surely have the solidarity that every fighting person deserves. The only thing we can do to challenge to nightmare we are all living in is daily and continuous insurrection.
NO BORDERS NO STATE
Anarchist group of Cyprus
The trial has now been set for August 27 2002
Freedom for anarchist George Karakasian,
hostage of the State of Cyprus
27th August 2002, anarchist comrade George Karakasian made his third appearance in court following a demo outside the Israeli embassy in Nicosia 18th April 2002, on the occasion of a celebration of the anniversary of the foundation of the State of Israel, where scuffles broke out between demonstrators and the police who were protecting the entry of guests to the assassins’ banquet.
The accusation is that of ‘beating a cop’ (who happened to be the second in command for the whole of Cyprus) and causing damage to the car of one of the guests.
It was already clear that this was to be no ordinary trial.
George received his summons only sixteen hours before the first hearing, at which he was accused of ‘crimes’ which were not included in the original summons. When the comrade denied the accusations against him the prosecutor asked for the trial to be speeded up. It was set for two weeks later, (14/06/02) whereas all the other cases heard that day were postponed for three months. At the subsequent hearing the trial was set for today, 27th August, due to the absence of two witnesses.
During this time first one, then a second, defence lawyer abandoned the case as George was not prepared to apologise for his actions or ask the court for leniency. No other lawyer was prepared to take up his case. Defending anarchists is not good for business in this banana republic!
In court today George decided to speak alone, without a lawyer, and to claim responsibility for his actions. He also declared that he did not recognise the court, and was not going to beg for clemency. The judge was visibly confused and consternated by the singular individual before him who, underlining his revolutionary anarchist identity, was for the first time in the history of Cyprus, claiming responsibility for an act of rebellion with dignity and pride. The henchman of the State’s immediate reaction was to have George speedily removed from court and sent to prison for a week pending sentence, which he has promised will be the maximum for contempt of court. The date has been set for September 4.
All visits have been refused by the prison authorities.
George’s anarchist comrades in Cyprus are giving him their unconditional solidarity, with all possible means. But, unlike the State, anarchists know no boundaries. It’s up to comrades everywhere to show this fucking island full of soldiers and military bases, that another reality exists: that of the joyous lightness of rebellion.
Some comrades of the anarchist group of Cyprus
The following is a leaflet that was given out to tourists arriving at Larnaca airport. A large banner was left at the exit of the airport, and slogans written on the walls along the motorway.
WELCOME TO CYPRUS!
Before you begin your holiday basking on the beaches of this beautiful island, we invite you to read the following:
The Cypriot State, while calling itself democratic, tries in every way to obstruct and prevent each and every kind of social struggle and the very act of doubting the State itself.
At this moment anarchist comrade George Karakasian has been a hostage in the hands of this State since 27/08/02. The only ‘crime’ our comrade has committed is that he contested not only the existence of the State but also it’s logic of passivity, wage slavery, or ‘enclosure’ within the artificial needs required for the preservance and survival not only of the Cypriot State but of every other State and authority in general.
Last April, a period characterised by the massive and continuous massacre of the Palestinian people by the Zionist murderers, George Karakasian could not remain passive. Ignoring the lifestyle that wants people to stay closed within a personal deadlock characterised by the logic of survival (school, army, work, retirement, death), he chose daily struggle as a way of life and as an attitude of personal dignity.
The invitation of the Israeli ambassador, convinced that while massacres of children were taking place there was no problem in celebrating the anniversary of the establishment of his bloodthirsty State, fortunately did not remain unanswered. This time the people’s rage could not be contained by the forces of order and the inevitable riot police.
All the guard dogs of capital were present, ready as always to protect the bosses, exploiters and everyone who lives on the backs of the workers who are trying to survive in harder and harder living conditions.
The imprisoned comrade George Karakasian was presented in court with eight heavy charges, three of which are considered to be the most serious. We will dwell on this subject for a moment, not because we want to ‘justify’ anything–anyway social struggles cannot in any way be ‘judged’ by so-called ‘bourgeois legality’–but because we want to show the dirt, hypocrisy and everything else that the word ‘justice’, the candy they have in their mouths every day, stands for. So in order to destroy the illusions which the law serves to foster:
Charge (1): ‘Causing serious physical injury to a police officer’: If the symbolic grasp (showing up the hateful the role of the police present) of the hat of a cop who later talked in front of the cameras can be called ‘serious physical injury’, then what can we call the capturing of the comrade by these cops, his being dragged inside the home of the Israeli ambassador and continually beaten all over his body by five of them shouting at him ‘fuck your anarchy’. They also injured his ear by pulling his earring. The extent of his injuries was such that he was taken to hospital. The democratic procedure did not stop there. When George Karakasian returned to the hospital next day to take his case card this had accidentally disappeared…
Charge 2: ‘Causing criminal damage to windscreen of a car belonging to a one of the guests invited to the celebration’. The ‘gentleman’ in question, who happens to be the manager of a multinational company and was naturally invited to the celebration of slaughter, although having been warned warned by the comrade Karakasian to turn back, tried to drive through the demonstrators with his car!!! As if that were possible. Anyway, in our opinion, the reason he managed to escape is that anarchists are not killers or conspirators like the guests! Here the phrase fits: ‘they talk about damage to property while we are talking about the loss of human lives’.
Charge 3: ‘Being in possession of a explosive device’. This is the ridiculous accusation of possessing an old bullet which was found when his home was raided. This does not deserve comment and only shows clearly the revenge of a ‘civilised’ and progressive State such as Cyprus when it is about to judge social fighters and people with dignity. We have already clarified that we did are not presenting the charges in order to justify them. The dignified attitude our comrade held in the court (something seen for the first time in Cyprus) and the fact that he did not ask for it to show him any clemency, shows exactly what are the feelings of anarchists for so-called ‘bourgeois justice’ are.
We as comrades of anarchist George Karakasian feel sad of course because he has been imprisoned by the detestable Cyprus State, but at the same time we have the joy of knowing that our comrade remains strong and is aware of the impact his acts will have in the future on the revolutionary movement of the island and on struggles generally.
Our solidarity until the day of the sentence (4/09/02 but which will also continue later) will take the dimensions it has to, so that that all those who express the misery of power understand that the attack they have begun against anarchists and all those in struggle will not remain unanswered, and that they will pay for the evil they do.
For a free life, a life in which everyone will be able to enjoy everything through equality and solidarity.
FREEDOM TO ANARCHIST COMRADE GEORGE KARAKASIAN.
SOLIDARITY TO ANARCHIST SOTIRI MARANGO WHO WILL BE JUDGED FOR THE SAME CASE 19/09/02
ANARCHIST GROUP OF CYPRUS
For communication: firstname.lastname@example.org
Freedom to anarchist George Karakasian!
This is what we have been shouting since George was thrown behind bars on August 27 after standing up to a miserable little man in a miserable little room, the courtroom of infamy which everyone behind these gates passed through before being driven handcuffed to be locked up in a cell, for months, years, maybe for life.
We could go on and on about the decision of the ‘organs of justice’, the police and the court aided by their faithful servants, the media, to frame George: the string of trumped up charges (most of which were later dropped), the definition of an old bullet found in his home as an ‘explosive device’, the haste with which he was summoned to court to get the case over with as quickly as possible, etc etc. But we are not here to protest our comrade’s innocence.
We are not here to protest his innocence first and foremost because we know that George Karakasian is guilty: HE IS GUILTY OF BEING AN ANARCHIST. That is why he was singled out from a crowd of 250 people and charged along with a few others, (one of whom, Sotiris Marangos is also an anarchist and is due to go on trial on October 19). They were expressing their anger against the Zionist murderers at a demonstration outside the Israeli ambassador’s home to mark the anniversary of the Israeli State which is responsible for the relentless massacre of thousands of Palestinian men women and children.
We are not here to protest George’s innocence because we do not accept the court’s definition of ‘right’ and ‘wrong’. The law is nothing but an instrument that society uses to maintain privilege for the few, and a life of drudgery and submission for the many. Prison is the cornerstone of this reality, the ultimate threat in a society that divides us into good and bad, innocent and guilty, in the interests of capital.
We are not here to protest his innocence because we know that violence is the monopoly of the State. Its guard dogs, the cops, regularly beat and even kill in the interests of their masters, with their full approval. Screws turn the key on thousands of prisoners every night for years on end in the slow, absurd violence of reclusion. Judges dish out sentences like sweets and get promotion if they do a good turn to the State by getting rid of one of the ‘troublemakers’ for a while. We don’t need to scale the pinnacle of violence, however, in order to put the whole of society in question. The soldier in the barracks, the worker, the unemployed, ‘drug addict’, the immigrant, etc also have plenty of good reasons for struggling against their condition.
So we are here to express our solidarity with George and with all the exploited who find themselves behind bars because they have refused to bow down the to the sacred book of law, the bible of democracy. Our solidarity is not solidarity of miseria, but with the struggle of the men and women who refuse such a condition.
We express this solidarity with love and rage in the game of life that above all makes us free ourselves, destroys alienation, exploitation and mental poverty, opening up infinite spaces to experimentation in a project aimed at realising itself in insurrection, for a free society built on the rubble of the old.
Freedom to anarchist George Karakasian!
Destroy all prisons!
A LETTER FROM GEORGE KARAKASIAN, HOSTAGE OF THE STATE IN CYPRUS
This letter from George Karakasian reached us clandestinely from prison.
(All his books and letters have been confiscated, and mail with comrades has been stopped.)
16 November 2002
I have been a hostage in the prisons of the Cypriot State since August 27 2002. The court convicted me, giving me a seven months sentence because I rebelled, offering my solidarity to the fighting people of Palestine, but also, and mainly, because I didn’t regret hitting a cop, my class enemy. I admitted all the charges that the protectors and accomplices of the zionist murderers accused me of. In my ‘defence’ I said that the charges against me were questionable and completely ridiculous. The attempt to knock off a cop’s hat had been interpreted by the media as ‘continuous punching’ using artificial video repetition and false testimonies of the police.
Of course the slander, twisting and misrepresentation concerning the events that took place on the 18 April outside the blood-drenched villa of the zionist scum, does not end here. During a period of social unrest marked by international mobilization against the baneful slaughter by the dominators which is continually intensifying (Afghanistan, Middle East and Iraq), the TV and radio represented the actions of anarchists and other fighting people as ‘shameful episodes’.
As well as persecuting rebels the Cypriot State imports Israeli systems of surveillance and has even provided a stadium for the Israeli team to play football in so as to maintain perfect diplomatic relations with the bloodthirsty State of Israel.
In my ‘defence’ in court (27/08/02) I said the following: ‘The police concocted this machination, adding maximum charges against me in order to vilify me as much as possible. The cops are the henchmen of the State, authority and zionism. I declare with full responsibility that I am against the State and every kind of authority. Concerning the ‘beating ‘ of the police chief, I do not see that I acted wrongly nor do I ask for the leniency of the court’.
The judge executioner, surprised at first, mentioned that this could not be called an ‘defence’ or was a defence in quotation marks. Then, furious, he had me remanded in custody until the day of the verdict (September 4) bearing in mind the report of the social welfare office.
4/09/02. Before pronouncing sentence the judge, on reading the interview that I gave to the social worker, said: ‘In his interview the accused expresses his ideology since he stated that he struggles for a society with equality and solidarity, without nations or classes.’ Before the judge could finish his sentence I raised my fist towards his hated bench, then towards the public to face my comrades who had fought with me, intending in this way to assure everyone in the courtroom, and also all those who every day sink further into the swamp of apathy and illusions, THAT CONSENSUS WITH THE TERRORIST STATE WILL NEVER EXIST
Finally I would like to give my solidarity to comrade Sotiris Marangos who is being tried for the same events and to all those who rebel everywhere in the world.
Central Prison of Cyprus,
Wing 2B 6523, Nicosia, Cyprus.
George’s imprisonment is a consequence of events that occurred at a demonstration outside the home of the Israeli ambassador in Nicosia, Cyprus. The occasion was a party the latter had decided to throw for local politicians and businessmen to celebrate the anniversary of the bloodthirsty State of Israel. Many people, including anarchists, were angry about this celebration of the genocide of the Palestinian people.
A number of arrests were made and particular repression was meted out to the anarchists as they did not attempt to defend their actions, underlining their solidarity with the people of Palestine in their struggle against the Israeli project of annihilation. George was severely beaten that night and taken to hospital. The next day his file was nowhere to be found. He was later sentenced to 7 month’s prison during which time his mail has been censured and all his personal belongings (books, letters, etc) have been confiscated.
Repression against anarchists and sympathisers in Cyprus does not stop here. Following a flyposting expedition a comrade was dragged away handcuffed from outside the anarchist meeting place, taken to the cop station and repeatedly beaten to the extent that the cops themselves took him to hospital. This however did not prevent them recommencing the beating upon their return. He was released, bruised and bleeding next day.
Anarchist comrade Sotiris Marangos is currently on trial in Nicosia court, under the same judge Papamichael who sentenced George - for which he received instant promotion - with similar charges. The next hearing has been set for December 5th.
Here is the text of a poster that has been flyposted in various towns of Cyprus.