Press conference of the defense team for the nine survivors of the Pylos shipwreck

The team of defense lawyers for the nine survivors of the Pylos shipwreck invites you to a Press Conference on Thursday, May 16, 2024 at 12:00, at ESIEA (Athens Press Union, 20 Akadimias Street, Athens, 3rd floor).

The trial of the nine Egyptian survivors of the deadly shipwreck of Pylos is set for the 21 May 2024, in Kalamata.

The defendants were arrested and charged, with insufficient evidence, as being responsible for the tragedy, in less than 24 hours after the shipwreck. Some of them were taken to the port authorities directly from the hospital where they were hospitalized. The investigation into what really happened was closed within a few months, without a thorough examination of the available evidence, particularly that which could shed light on the actual circumstances of the shipwreck. All relevant requests by the defense team in this respect were rejected

The case, therefore, has so far followed the path of systematic criminalization of migrants and asylum seekers in Greece, with a fast-track procedure.

This is happening despite the fact that the evidence that has seen the light of day from 14 June 2023 until now – both from the survivors themselves who clearly describe the towing and the resulting capsizing of the fishing boat, as well as from international media investigations – points to the Greek Coast Guard and Frontex as being responsible, as both agencies were aware of and monitored the ship being in distress for at least a full day, but did not carry out a rescue operation as circumstances dictated. Instead, it appears that they launched an illegal pushback operation, following their usual practice.

As is the case in most cases of criminalisation of migrants alleged to be ‘traffickers’, the defendants are threatened with multiple life sentences if convicted.

Defense lawyers speaking at the Press Conference: Vicky Angelidou, Alexis Georgoulis, Efi Dousi, Chrysanthi Kaouni, Eugenia Kouniaki, Natasha Dailiani, Spyros Pantazis, Dimitris Choulis.

The panel will be moderated by Dimitris Angelidis, journalist (EF.SYN. – “Efimerida ton Syntakton”).

The press conference will also be broadcasted live by OmniaTV.

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