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Thousands of prisoners in Greece went on a hunger strike on November 11, to protest at detention conditions.

The day before, Mikis Theodorakis sent a statement to the “Initiative for the Rights of Prisoners”.


What goes on behind the bars of every Greek jail should embarrass every citizen of this country. Because it proves, how unscrupulous we are, how inhuman we are, and how uncultured we are. In the end, everything in this country is a showcase: Parliament, government, parties, television, universities and artists.

A wrong showcase, in order to hide meanness and unfairness behind it. Particularly in a case like that of a prisoner, whom we condemn to live under inhuman conditions and forget that it concerns human beings like us, who have committed an fault in their life, as this can happen to each one of us. However just being enclosed between four walls, is already a heavy punishment. But beyond this fact, it is necessary to secure decent and humane living conditions to a prisoner, so that every detainee can have the opportunity to think and try to improve himself so that one day he can return to his family, to society which needs everyone.

I am absolutely at your side, although I have no other forces than my bitter experiences and my tired voice.

Athens, 10.11.2008

Mikis Theodorakis

Translation: Guy Wagner

see also: Ekathimerini

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