Thousands of people, workers, men and women of every age, participated on Thursday afternoon in demonstrations across Greece, against the Greece-U.S. “defense cooperation agreement” which upgrades and extends the american military bases in the country. The rallies were organized by the Greek Committee for International Detente and Peace (EEDYE), the Federation of Greek Women (OGE), Workers' Unions and Associations, Students' Unions and other groups of the people's movement.
At the same time, the Parliament was ratifying the despicable Agreement with 175 votes for, 33 against and 80 MPs declaring “present” out of a total of 288 MPs. The Communist Party (KKE) MPs voted against this dangerous deal and denounced the policy of the current and previous governments.
In Athens, thousands gathered at Syntagma Square, shouting slogans against the Agreement and in favor of Greece’s disengagement from the imperialist alliances of NATO and the EU. “Close down the bases and the military headquarters, we do not fight for NATO’s slaughterhouses” was one of the slogans.
Speeches were delivered by Nikos Papanastasis, KKE MP, lieutenant colonel (Ret) and Giota Tavoulari, President of the Federation of Workers in the Pharmaceutical Industry.
A delegation of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE), headed by the General Secretary Dimitris Koutsoumbas, attended the rally.
The demonstrators marched towards the U.S. Embassy where they symbolically burned an american flag and shouted slogans against the presence of U.S. military bases in Greece.
Big rallies were also held in other major cities. In Thessaloniki, the demonstrators gathered at Venizelos’ statue where a speech was delivered by Giorgos Margaritis, Professor at the Aristotle University. The protesters marched through the city center and stopped outside the U.S. Consulate where they shouted slogans and burned a U.S flag.
KKE MPs voted against the “Greece-U.S agreement” in the Parliament
In the Parliament, the deputies of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) voted against the Greek-U.S. “defense cooperation agreement”, denouncing the government for transforming the country into a vast U.S-NATO base.
“We vote against the agreement, because we don’t want a new Iraq, a new Afghanistan, a new Syria, a new Yugoslavia, a new Yemen, a new Palestine, a new Ukraine, a new Cyprus, a new Imia, new coup d’etats, new waves of refugees, new slaughterhouses” pointed out the KKE General Secretary Dimitris Koutsoumbas during his speech.
Koutsoumbas said that the title “defense agreement” is fake, adding that the purpose of the Greek-U.S deal is the upgrading of Greece’s involvement in imperialist wars. He accused both the current conservative New Democracy government, as well as the previous social democratic government of SYRIZA, as servants of the euroatlantic doctrine.