The Movement for the Support of Migrants and Refugee rights of Patras is organising on October 17th and 18th 2008 the 1st Antiracist Festival in the central square of the city called Saint George. it will include discussion panels, exhibitions and concerts.

The general subject is immigration in Patras. In detail the discussions and exhibitions will mainly focus on the refugee issues of the city:

1. The by the authorities planned “center of hospitality” which is planned to be a place outside the city under the custody of the Ministry of Interior where more than 200 police officers will be employed. Thus, contrary to the demands of the solidarity groups the state is planning a new detention center obviously in order to remove the refugees from the self-constructed transit camp instead of improving the living conditions.

2. The demand to grand asylum to the refugees in the light of new presidential decrees which will harshen the measures against immigration. The main discussion will be supported by the participation of the leading Greek refugee lawyer Jana Kourtovic, the former Afghan interpretor of the Red Cross in Patras Aman M. who was until recently employed for the programme for the support of unaccompanied minors, the only NGO project working since years with the refugees of Patras, and Gabriele del Grande, an Italian activist working and producer of the well known internet site www.fortresseurope.blogspot.com. Other participants include refugee and immigrant communities, solidarity groups and NGOs.

As a communications form to the society and between activists, social workers of the field and migrants themselves, the festival plays an important role for the future of the transit camp in Patras, since we have seen in the last months a imense worsening of the situation, within others due to increasingly devastating living conditions of the refugees in the transit camp, the closing of the Red Cross support programme and harshening measures of the authorities.

We have to fight together for...

.. the right to asylum
... against the Dublin convention
... open borders and the freedom of movement
... human rights for everybody

And against illegal...

... detention and fines for the act of illegal exit from the country
... deportation of refugees from Italy to Greece
... all froms of police violence
... all forms of discrimination and racism

The Movement for the Support of Migrants and Refugee rights of Patras