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Πέμπτη, 30 Οκτωβρίου 2008

ΔΙΕΘΝΗΣ ΚΑΤΑΚΡΑΥΓΗ ΓΙΑ ΤΟ ΧΤΥΠΗΜΑ ΤΩΝ ΜΑΦΙΟΖΩΝ


The Observatory
for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders

L’OBSERVATOIRE
pour la Protection des Défenseurs
des Droits de l’Homme
EL OBSERVATORIO
para la Protección
de los Defensores de Derechos Humanos

URGENT APPEAL - THE OBSERVATORY

Greece: Assault on journalist and human rights defender Makis Nodaros

GRE 002 / 1008 / OBS 173
Assault
Greece
October 28, 2008


The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a joint programme of the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT) and the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), requests your intervention in the following situation in Greece.

Description of the situation:

The Observatory has been informed by the Greek Helsinki Monitor (GHM) about the assault on Mr. Makis Nodaros, a journalist and human rights defender, in his home town of Lechaina in Elia (Western Greece).

According to the information received, on October 23, 2008, Mr. Makis Nodaros, the Elia regional correspondent for the Athens daily Eleftherotypia, the Patras daily Imera, the Patras television station Teletime, the Patras radio station Radio Gamma, and also the host of a daily programme for the Elia radio station Ionian FM, was attacked by two unidentified men at around 11 a.m. as he was returning home after his daily radio programme.

The two men approached him, asked him if he was Makis Nodaros, and then punched and kicked him many times, even after he had fallen down and bled. The two assailants tried to break his laptop, stole his mobile phone, and then fled on a motorcycle they had hidden close to the place of the incident. He was offered first aid treatment at the regional medical centre and was diagnosed with head, hand and foot wounds, and later returned home.

The Observatory is deeply concerned by this assault against Mr. Makis Nodaros as it seems to sanction his human rights activities. Indeed, Mr. Nodaros recently wrote a number of articles exposing corruption and mismanagement over relief provided by the Government, local authorities and non-government institutions for victims of forest fires, which last year destroyed a large part of the region. He had received threats before the attack of October 23. Mr. Nodaros has also recently published several articles about alleged corruption involving the Mayor of the adjacent Elia town of Zacharo. The Mayor reportedly succeeded in having him fired from a local Elia newspaper, and has also announced that he is filing lawsuits against Mr. Nodaros and the newspapers in which he published his articles. The Mayor is also the target of judicial and administrative investigations.

In 2006, Mr. Makis Nodaros had already been prosecuted for aggravated defamation, subsequent to an article published in 2004 article in the local Pyrgos-based daily Proti, in which he was expressing his concern for the sexual exploitation of a minor.

Action requested:

Please write to the authorities in Greece urging them to:
i. Guarantee in all circumstances the physical and psychological integrity of Mr. Makis Nodaros;

ii. Order a thorough and impartial investigation into the above-mentioned assault, in order to identify all those responsible, bring them before an ordinary competent and impartial tribunal and apply to them the penal sanctions provided by the law;

iii. Put an end to all acts of harassment, including at the judicial level, against all human rights defenders in Greece;

iv. Conform with the provisions of the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders, adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on December 9, 1998, especially its Article 1, which states that “everyone has the right, individually and in association with others, to promote and to strive for the protection and realisation of human rights and fundamental freedoms at the national and international levels”, and Article 12.2, which provides that “the State shall take all necessary measures to ensure the protection by the competent authorities of everyone, individually and in association with others, against any violence, threats, retaliation, de facto or de jure adverse discrimination, pressure or any other arbitrary action as a consequence of his or her legitimate exercise of the rights referred to in the present Declaration”;

v. More generally, ensure in all circumstances the respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms in accordance with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and with international and regional human rights instruments ratified by Greece.

Addresses:

· Mr. Kostas Karamanlis, Prime Minister, Prime Minister’s Office at the Hellenic Parliament, Greek Parliament Blgd, Constitution Square, Athens, Greece. Fax: +30 210 3238129, Email:
Mail@primeminister.gr
· Ms. Dora Bakoyannis, Foreign Minister, Athens, Greece, Fax: + 30 210 36 81 433, Email: gpap@mfa.gr
· Mr. Sotiris Hatzigakis, Minister of Justice, Athens, Greece, Fax +30 2107489231
· Mr. Giorgos Kaminis, Ombudsman for Human Rights, Fax 30 210 7289643
· H.E. Franciscos Verros, Ambassador, Permanent Mission of Greece to the United Nations in Geneva, Rue du Léman 4, 1201 Geneva, Switzerland, Email:
mission.greece@ties.itu.int, Fax: +41 22 732.21.50
· Diplomatic Mission of Greece to the European Union, 25 rue Montoyer, 1000 Brussels, Belgium, Fax: + 32 2 512 79 12 / + 32 2 551 56 51.

Please also write to the diplomatic mission or embassy of Greece in your respective country.

***
Geneva - Paris, October 28, 2008

Kindly inform us of any action undertaken quoting the code of this appeal in your reply.

The Observatory, a FIDH and OMCT venture, is dedicated to the protection of Human Rights Defenders and aims to offer them concrete support in their time of need. The Observatory was the winner of the 1998 Human Rights Prize of the French Republic.

To contact the Observatory, call the emergency line:
E-mail: Appeals@fidh-omct.org
Tel and fax FIDH + 33 (0) 1 43 55 20 11 / +33 1 43 55 18 80
Tel and fax OMCT + 41 (0) 22 809 49 39 / + 41 22 809 49 29

FIDH
International Federation for Human Rights
17, Passage de la Main d’Or
75 011 Paris, France
OMCT
World Organisation Against Torture
Case postale 21 - 8 rue du Vieux-Billard
1211 Geneva 8, Switzerland

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