The Athens Bar Association expresses its strong disgust for the instances of exceeding the legal boundaries of police violence against citizens, among them lawyers, that we witnessed in the center of Athens (on 6 March 2021) and in Nea Smyrni (on 7 March 2021).

The above events, which were connected to reports that the police prevented the holding of a peaceful gathering as well as the access of those arrested to a lawyer, have no place in a democratic and civilized state and are completely condemnable.

We emphasize that the police have as their institutional mission the protection of the fundamental rights of citizens, among which the rights of peaceful assembly (Article 11 of the Constitution) and unimpeded access to a defense lawyer.

Every violation of these (rights) constitutes criminal and disciplinary misconduct which seriously damages our legal culture and is intolerable in a state governed by the rule of law.

We call on the competent state and judicial authorities to proceed immediately with a full and in-depth investigation into the facts which came into public view and the rapid holding to account of those responsible.

 

Translation by Jeannette A. Arduino, from the voluntary Pressenza translation team. We are looking for volunteers!