Anonymous submission to MTL Counter-info
On Monday the 23rd of May the anarchist Giannis Mihailidis, held at the Malandrinos prison in Greece, started a hunger strike to obtain his conditional release. In a letter he wrote announcing the hunger strike, he emphasizes – among other aspects – that this battle for his freedom is also an attempt to participate in the larger struggle against State and capital from which his long imprisonment has cut him off. In order to support this initiative out on the streets, many different types of actions are being organized across the Greek territory. To do everything possible to keep this umpteenth episode of struggle of our comrade from being caged in silence, we call for international solidarity. Although we thoroughly believe the best solidarity will always be to continue and deepen our fights, we think it is valuable to look at Giannis’ history of struggle, the hostility with which he looks at the existent, and the ideas of freedom he always carried inside of him on both sides of the prison walls – to recognize ourselves in the reflections of his turbulent journey of revolt. This is an opportunity to accompany our comrade in a fragment of his fight in a more outspoken way, using the means each of us sees fit.
Below you will find a short summary of Giannis’ long history with the authorities and a link to his initial letter announcing his hunger strike translated in English, German, Italian, French, and Spanish. We strongly encourage the further spreading of this call for solidarity among other comrades and spaces.
In February 2011, Giannis Mihailidis is arrested at a big demonstration in Athens and is charged with attempted murder for attacking the riot cops with bow and arrow, after which he is released on conditions. One month later, after the arrest of 5 members of CCF in a house in Volos, a warrant is issued for Giannis’ arrest for membership in CCF, based on finding his fingerprints in the house in question. He decides to go on the run.
In April 2011, in a shootout between Theofilos Mavropoulos and cops in the Pevki area in Athens, Giannis is suspected of being present and fleeing the scene by stealing the cop car. He is charged for attempted murder for injuring a cop that tried to stop him while fleeing, and condemned many years later when he’s again in prison.
A little less that two years later, in February 2013 in the town of Veria, he is arrested along with three other anarchists and sent to prison, shortly after a double robbery of a bank and post office in Velventos, northern Greece.
In June 2019, after six years in prison, he escapes from the rural prison of Tyrintha in the Peloponnese region. Seven months later he is arrested again in an Athens suburb, armed and in a stolen car, along with two other comrades. He is charged with a bank robbery that happened in August 2019 in Erymanthia, and is sent again to prison.
On December 29th 2021, he reached three fifths of his total merged sentence, and is allowed to apply for his conditional release. On May 23rd, after a first negative answer and the prosecutor’s request for a negative answer on his second application, he decides to start a hunger strike aiming at his release.