Police recordings of Greek and foreign journalists for the Skouries gold mine case in Greece directed to criminalize activists
The Greek para-state of 60s is here, now.
Transcripts of telephone interviews and conversations with Greek and foreign reporters have been included the case file relating to the investigation of anti-mining activists in northern Greece suspected of founding a "criminal organisation".
It is worth noting that telephone transcripts were conducted in 2012 , long before the armed attack on the factory of the company Hellenic Gold in Skouries-Halkidiki. The use of published interviews and contacts with journalists as evidence for criminal activities, has no precedent in country's history.
The Association of Daily Newspapers Editors of Athens announced that "Dolorous impression has caused in journalism the fact that the case file is "enriched" with transcripts of telephone conversations - spying products - of Greek and foreign media journalists for the establishment of a supposed criminal organization in Skouries-Halkidiki", stating that "there is no precedent in the history of the country."
The Association also announced that "The journalistic reportage, conversations of journalists and their publications should not be considered data for “criminal activities”" and asked from the Ministries of Public Order and Justice and the involved judges and prosecutors to "immediately give explanations."
The authorities accuse the Hellenic Mining Watch founder Tolis Papageorgiou that, fraudulently gave false information and propagandistic material, in order to influence the opinion of people to react positively to the anti-gold residents of the area and against the Hellenic Gold company. Some conversations of Tolis Papageorgiou with a journalist of Reuters included in telephone transcripts. The police indirectly accuse Greek, but even the international press that, even unwittingly, is involved in a type of propaganda against the Hellenic Gold company.
But what is particularly interesting is the fact that the authorities show a special sensitivity for the Hellenic Gold company, essentially prohibiting any reaction against it. The invention of "propaganda" essentially makes unreliable any disagreement with the company and its investment plan and makes unreliable anyone who claims that an environmental crime is taking place in the specific area. The authorities seem to criminalize dialogue, while blaming a single man, and possibly some others, that he affects public opinion through the media, which he used to his advantage.
And all these, while the company itself admits - rather proudly - that is funding the security forces in the region. It's true. The Hellenic Gold company, through its magazine "Mining News", admits that in the context of "corporate social responsibility" not only subsidizes infrastructure and schools or health centers, but also security forces. Hellenic Gold says in the magazine that "a key part of reciprocity ends in public services and security forces with financial and material-technical support at every level." This means that the Hellenic Gold offers its services to the Greek police among other things, in the name of the so-called "corporate social responsibility". This act is not obviously illegal, but it is an indication of the company's relations with the state which provides protection. The same state that sold the land and the mines to the company at ridiculous price.