34 injured in the ‘strawberry’ villages – they were asking for their salaries after being unpaid for months
SYRIZA and KKE condemn the incident
At least 34 Bangladeshi workers ended up in the hospital after they were shot by land caretakers in the strawberry fields in Nea Manolada, Ilia. Dozens of angry foreign workers who were unpaid for at least six months had gathered demanding to be paid for their work. Instead they were shot by the business’s caretakers.
According to the victims’ testimonies, at least three people with hunting rifles suddenly starting shooting at them. Pandemonium followed with gory workers trying to hide in the nearby fields and gunmen chasing them.
The injured were taken to hospitals and health centers of the region and the most seriously injured were transported by ambulances to hospitals of Patras. Five people were hospitalized in critical condition with wounds all over their body from the shots.
As the Greek police revealed, they arrested the owner of the company while they are still searching for the three caretakers. Information indicates that the perpetrators fled by car to Patras.
The police, however, said that one of the three company employees opened fire.
This is not the first time similar events involving foreign workers in the region are reported. Serious incidents having to do with the wages of foreign workers had broken out last May.
What is indicative of the situation in the region, which is known for its strawberry fields, is the dozens of briefs at the police station of Varda regarding the illegal employment of foreigners. As ‘E’ had written on 28/4/2011, between 2007 and April 2011 in this police station had filed a total of 155 such briefs.
SYRIZA’s and KKE’s condemnations
“The gunshots against migrant workers in Manolada, who were claiming payment for their work, constitute a criminal, racist act,” says SYRIZA in a statement about the incident and notes that “justice should be done immediately; this is imperative.”
“This particular event, where big bosses with their henchmen attack workers who are asserting their rights reminds us of other times and confirms that barbarism is a synonym of the present system of capitalism. Greek and foreign workers, united as a fist, have to fight against this barbarism and the system that gives birth to it, “says the Communist Party in a statement condemning ” the attack against immigrants, land laborers, coming from big landowners and caretakers in Manolada, Ilia. ”
[Translated article from ‘Eleftherotypia’ newspaper, 17/04/2013, found online at: http://www.enet.gr/?i=news.el.ellada&id=358419]