Strong mobilizations of small and medium farmers with roadblocks and protests take place across Greece. The mobilizations constitute a follow-up of the peasants’ struggles during last autumn.
The Athens-Thessaloniki national highway is closed various points. Farmers with tractors have also closed from Tuesday noon the Greek borders with Bulgaria at the Promachonas frontier crossing. Blockades have been set at the the node of Nikaia, Larissa and Kastro, Serres and Egnatia Odos
The new round of mobilizations begun on 19th of January when thousands of peasants blocked with their tractors the highways in the regions of Thessalia, Thessaloniki, Amfissa, Lamia, Serres, Kavala, Kilkis, Drama and Halkidiki, protesting the CAP of the EU and the policies followed by the Greek governments that have caused despair to the small and medium farmers who denounce the prices for cotton, wheat, corn as “humiliating”. The income loss as a consequence of the CAP reaches 40%.
PASY (All Farmers Militant Rally) has put forward the following main demands:
guaranteed prices for all agricultural and livestock products
reduction of the production costs (eg petroleum price). Abolition of VAT
support to the local products and increase of the exports through inter-state agreements
Upgrade of irrigation systems and other infrastructure by the state
100% compensation in case of natural destruction
Loan freeze for 3 years
The government was obliged to resort to maneuvers and promises in order to tackle the situation. In an effort to decoy the farmers announced a special “pack” of 500 million euros, which was rejected by the farmers. The PASOK tries to take advantage of the situation while at the same time distances itself from the struggles and especially the roadblocks.
Part of this effort to divide and spread confusion is the setting up of a second initiative by cadres of ND, PASOK, SYN and LAOS that has called for separate mobilizations with completely different demands which do not address the real problems while at the same tine are very convenient for the government. It is not by chance that the government opted to invite for dialogue representatives of this initiative.
The KKE has welcomed the mobilizations of the medium and small peasantry and has called upon the workers and the urban self-employed strata to support the struggles.
KNE has also organised solidarity events and has made efforts to mobilise students of schools and universities Unions to express their solidarity with the struggle of small and medium farmers in each one of the roadblocks.