Prozess gegen ELA
Prozess gegen 17.November
Fotos und Plakate
Europäisches Sozialforum
in Athen 2006


Reported by Petros Yiotis (kontra)

Wednesday, 7.12.2005


3rd meeting

The judge announced the rejection of all objections of initially acquitted defendants regarding admissibility of the appeal by the public prosecutors. The court decided that the prosecutors' appeals should become formally accepted. Public prosecutor E. Goytzamani announced that she possesses a report of the Security Authorities that includes an expertise report on keys found in one of the safe-houses (Patmou). On the grounds of her intention to submit this report as evidence at the right time, she made it available for the defendants' information.

This is a repetition of what happened in the first trial. An ongoing investigation throughout the trial that produces evidence to cater for the needs of the bill of indictment and media expediency. This has already happened with the supposed keys of Yiotopoulos, that appeared half way through the first trial, when poverty of evidence against Yiotopoulos was obvious, in order to support the allegations against him.

The defence reacted to this. It stressed that there should be a limit to the involvement of the police. The report in question is no document and following the end of the investigation such research can only be commissioned by the court. The particular report should be removed now. Otherwise the charges become moving sand and that follows the development of the trial. All evidence belongs to the jurisdiction of the court, with the Police serving as guardians. The guardian cannot conduct interrogative actions that are not ordered by the court. According to the article of 6 ESDA (European Convention of Human Rights), the defendant has to know what the indictment is exactly and what evidence supports it at the beginning of a trial. If this is not the case, if interrogation is continued during the process, a fair trial is not possible. If this report is accepted the trial is returning to medieval juridical practices.

The chairman announced that the court reserves decisions about this demand of defence.

Following this, the defence submitted demand that media including TV is allowed the transmission of the trial. This was objected to by the repentant Patroclos Tselendis who is collaborating with the police as well as the public prosecutor. The defence proved with thorough reasoning that the law that permits prohibition of radio-television transmission, even if this is one of the defendants wishes, is contrary to the Greek Constitution and to article 6 of  ESDA(European Convention of Human Rights). This law (law 3090/2002) was voted in very close to the beginning of the first trial for the affair of 17N (following the arrests and the end of interrogation). It was an ad hoc law, that was made to regulate two aspects of these trials: the way judges are selected (with prequalification) and the prohibition of television transmission.

Why is this? For the reason that the former Prime Minister Mr Mitsotakis explained cynically last week: "It is a shame to give television tribune to the terrorists".

They were arrested, publicly ridiculed on television, they were portrayed as the arrestees wanted, they were rendered in absentia political detainees, a trial was set up with provocative manipulations and when the time came that they themselves would be heard, their voices, their arguments, their defence, their political reasoning, a radio and television blackout is imposed on a trial that even public access of is prevented (The specially prepared courtroom is in Koridalos, a distant suburb instead of the court of appeals in the centre of Athens, and the few people who do attend are recorded and searched). This is obviously a political and not a legal matter.

A matter that only a courageous court could resolve, by ruling that this particular law is unconstitutional (article 93) and against ESDA(European Convention of Human Rights) articles and allowing the free radio-television transmission of the trial.