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It was a crime: The shipwreck of Pylos that Killed 600 Refugees

We are publishing the appeal by Greek comrades regarding the shipwreck of Pylos on the 14th of June, 2023. The 14th of June marks one year from the shipwreck of Pylos when over 600 refugees lost their lives after an operation of Frontex and Greek Coast Guard that escalated to an attempt to tie the ship with a rope leading to the catastrophe:

It was a crime, it was murder, the drowning of 600 refugees in the Pylos shipwreck! 

Six hundred and fifty families in Pakistan, Egypt, Syria and Palestine are mourning the loss of their loved ones who were on board the ship Adriana and ended up at the bottom of the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Pylos on 14 June 2023. 

We join our voices with the survivors of the shipwreck who denounce that their ship sank after it was overturned by the violent towing of a Coast Guard vessel in order to be pushed back to Italy. The ship left Libya on 9 June and there were already dead due to the appalling conditions before it sank. For 16 hours, on 13 June 2023, the Coast Guard and Frontex watched 750 people in distress and did not proceed with a rescue as they were obliged to do to save people in distress at sea. 

Only 104 survived while 82 bodies were recovered. Over 600 refugees drowned in the shipwreck. 

It was murder!

It is the most horrific racist crime on borders of fortress Europe against people persecuted by dictatorships, wars and starvation, people who tried to escape certain death from bombs, torture, extermination in their countries. They had the right to asylum and hospitality but were treated like all refugees and migrants: with fences, persecution by the Coast Guard, border guards and Frontex, concentration camps, pushbacks and murder. 

The Greek government of the New Democracy, the champion in covering up the crime of Tempi, is trying to cover up the responsibilities of the Ministry of Shipping and the Coast Guard for the crime of Pylos, this time blaming nine survivors. Nine survivors are brought to trial on 21 May in Kalamata on charges of causing a shipwreck, migrant trafficking and criminal organization. 

We stand by the victims, the survivors and their families who are seeking justice. To punish the real culprits, the government, the Coast Guard, Frontex. Closed border policies have cost over 20,000 drowned refugees in the Mediterranean since 2015 to date. It is the policies that pave the way for the rise of the far right and fascists in Greece and Europe. 

We must finally put an end to the horrors of murder at the borders! Refugees, women and children are welcome with rights and not with persecution. 

We say it with all the power of our voice! 

No cover-up of the crime of Pylos, punish the murderers, vindication of the victims of the shipwreck of Pylos! 

We call for a solidarity mobilization in Kalamata on 21 May for the trial of the nine refugee survivors of the Pylos shipwreck. 

We call for a mass demonstration in Athens on 14 June, one year after the crime of Pylos and actions outside Greek embassies everywhere.