It is a case going back to 2007 when the refugee was transported to the port of Chios. The allegations regarded torture involving strangling, suffocation, mock execution and other forms of blatant violations of human dignity.
Six and three years on parole, respectively, were the sentences decided by the 5-member Naval Court of Pireaus for the two out of three Coast Guard officers initially accused of torturing the refugee.
Simultaneously, the defendants are facing many years of deprivation of their political rights. One of them faces in addition deposal from his rank, after the final court procedure.
The allegations regarded torture by means of preventing breathing to the extend of suffocation and strangling (“dry” and “wet submarine|) as well as mock execution […].
The incident was reported in the Group of Lawyers for the Rights of Migrants and Refugees report as well as by Proasyl.
“The truth may be bitter, but it has to be told – the situation of refugees in the Aegean area and the practices of the Coast Guard” – the report was published in 2007 and hit the headlines at the time.
“We welcome the decision made by the army authorities and we hope that it will give out a message of deterence of criminal behavior against refugees and migrants for which unfortunately members of the Coast Guard – an institution with a military structure – have been accused of the last few years”, the Group of Lawyers mentions in a statement they made and notes:
“We also hope that the abovementioned indictment will constitute an example of respect for human rights across Europe, as practices of unlawful refoulement of refugees putting their lives in danger, have been documented not only in Greece but throughout Europe in the context of deterring illegal immigration, a practice, however, that puts into danger the lives of people.”
Translated from ‘Efimerida ton Syntakton’ newspaper, 26/11/2013: http://www.efsyn.gr/?p=154199