Tag Archives: Greece

Greece: Chania lawyer injured in knife attack


A lawyer in Crete was lightly injured in a knife attack outside a courthouse in the city of Chania on Friday morning.

Manolis Papadomanolakis was waiting outside the building when a masked man approached him from behind, told him something and stabbed him on the neck with a knife, eye witnesses told police. The attacker then fled. 

The victim was transferred to the city’s hospital where, according to press reports, he was treated for a superficial neck injury.

The president of the Chania Bar Association, Christos Pramateftakis, spoke of an “unprecedented incident, unacceptable and reprehensible.”

“It is a criminal act as stabbing a colleague in the neck with a sharp object could have been fatal,” he told flashnews.gr. “Manolis Papadomanolakis is a member of the board of the Chania Bar Association and a colleague who serves justice with courage and humility.”






It’s been almost six months since the United States packed up and pulled out of Afghanistan, ending the longest war in American history and sending thousands of Afghans into hiding. The Taliban, rebranded as the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, initially promised amnesty and understanding to those who had opposed the terror group for more than 20 years.

But as many had feared, the Taliban lied.

A United Nations report released this week and seen by several news organizations claims approximately 100 former Afghan military members and government officials have been killed since the Taliban took over, at least two-thirds of them directly by the Taliban or their affiliates. That figure seemed improbable to one woman reached by Coffee or Die Magazine who is currently hiding in Afghanistan from Taliban retaliation. And it rang “unrealistically low” to a Marine Corps veteran in Mississippi who spends his free hours desperately trying to coordinate the rescue of people still in the country.

In a tweet, an account linked to the Taliban Ministry of Interior Affairs said the government “has not killed anyone since the amnesty.”

Aysha, whose name has been changed to protect her identity, is a 26-year-old human rights activist in Afghanistan who has spent the last five months hiding in fear for her life. She moves from one safe house to the next every few weeks, a shell-game tactic used to avoid the Taliban’s door-to-door searches.

“They are killing soldiers, activists and lawyers in the cities, villages and surrounding areas by [calling them] thieves, or removing them from their homes to unknown places,” Aysha told Coffee or Die. “No trace of them is left.” 


“The Taliban are actively persecuting those who either worked against the Taliban movement with the government or those who spoke out against the Taliban movement while they were conducting their insurgency,” Espinal said. “Two weeks ago we had an incident where one of the judges left the compound and the Taliban controlling that district recognized [him]. And [he] and his wife were beat in front of the family pretty much and they were taken away to an unknown prison. Luckily for them, they were one of the few that were released.”









https://www.sudouest.fr/justice/bordeaux-une-avocate-afghane-accueillie-le-coeur-ouvert-par-ses-confreres-8135235.php (FRANCAIS)


Afghanistan: Several prosecutors violently arrested in Badakhshan


۸صبح، بدخشان: بدخشان کې ځايي سرچینو دغه ولایت کې د یو شمېر مسلکي څارنوالانو د نیولو خبر ورکړی دی.

په یوه مکتبوب کې چې د بدخشان استیناف څارنوالی د لویې څارنوالۍ مقام ته لېږلی راغلي، چې د دغه ریاست څو مسلکي څارنوالان نیول شوي دي.

د مکتوب یوه برخه کې راغلي، چې د روانې میاشتې په ۲۲ نېټه د بدخشان د جنايي جرمونو پر وړاندې د مبارزې مدیر او له نشه يي توکو سره د مبارزې مدیر له وسله‌والو کسانو سره دغه ریاست ته ننوتي او د نوموړي ریاست څو مسلکي څارنوالان یې په تاوتریخجن ډول له ځان سره بېولي دي.

دغه راز یاد مکتبوب کې ویل شوي، چې د بدخشان د یمګان ولسوال د دغه ولایت د استیناف څارنوالۍ رییس ته سپکې سپورې ویلي او په مرګ یې ګواښلی دی.

مکتوب کې راغلي، د قضیې د هواري او د لویې څارنوالۍ مقام تر هدایت پورې به د بدخشان د استیناف څارنوالۍ ریاست تړل شوی وي.


https://gandhara.rferl.org/a/afghan-disabled-woman-prosecutor-jobless-taliban/31651273.html (ENGLISH)




Taliban takeover threatens independence of Afghan Bar


The humanitarian situation in Afghanistan has deteriorated markedly since the Taliban toppled Kabul on 15 August, with lawyers and judges increasingly under threat. The legal profession came under a renewed attack 100 days later as Taliban forces stormed the offices of the country’s only bar association and detained and threatened its members and staff.

The attack on the offices of the Afghanistan Independent Bar Association (AIBA) took place during an extraordinary meeting of AIBA’s Leadership Council on 23 November. Najla Raheel, AIBA’s Vice-President, was attending the meeting virtually when the line went dead. She learned later that armed Taliban had entered the building, closed the offices, tore down nameplates and demanded her colleagues hand over all of AIBA’s goods and documents. ‘We built the Association with the blood of our hearts,’ she told Global Insight. ‘Now my colleagues, who include women, are in a very bad situation. The Taliban may harm them and their families at any moment.’

Raheel and AIBA President, Ruhullah Qarizada, are two of the AIBA Executive team that have managed to flee Afghanistan with their families. The Taliban announced that the AIBA will be merged with the Ministry of Justice and has appointed one of its own leaders as president, effectively stripping the association of any independence.

Taliban leaders have swiftly shut down local protests and press conferences condemning AIBA’s takeover. Qarizada is particularly concerned that the Taliban has access to AIBA’s bank account and its database, which contains details of more than 2,500 registered lawyers. ‘In this database everything is written about these lawyers – their family members, their addresses, everything,’ he says. ‘The Taliban should not access that database because it will put lawyers’ lives in more danger.’

On 30 November the IBA sent a letter to UN Secretary General António Guterres highlighting its concerns over the Taliban’s seizure of AIBA’s database, bank account and its continued moves to compromise the independence of the country’s legal profession.

The AIBA was established in 2008 after the IBA raised considerable funds and worked jointly with local Afghan lawyers to create Afghanistan’s first bar association. ‘What they accomplished and their mission showcased the new Afghanistan at the time and particularly focused on the rule of law, an independent judiciary and women’s rights,’ says Mark Ellis, Executive Director of the IBA. ‘When the Taliban took over, it was clear to me that the Afghan Independent Bar Association was not only in jeopardy, but it would probably cease to exist.’

The Taliban doesn’t respect the rule of law, lawyers or people

Ruhullah Qarizada
President, Afghanistan Independent Bar Association

This prompted the IBA to embark on fundraising and evacuation efforts in conjunction with international partners to help AIBA’s leadership leave Kabul. $20,000 has been donated so far by several bar associations, but Ellis continues to push for IBA members to provide more financial support.

These efforts complement an intense campaign to evacuate Afghan female judges, lawyers and other vulnerable individuals at risk, including journalists and human rights defenders. Between 30 September and 24 October, the IBA team has worked with international and domestic partners to evacuate close to 500 people, including 103 women and their families, to Greece.

Many families remain in Greece awaiting destinations for onward travel. A number will receive safe passage to Iceland, Ireland, Australia, USA, New Zealand, the UK and Germany, but 70 families have still not been allocated a permanent residence. They have been housed in temporary accommodation thanks to a funding drive by the IBA’s Human Rights Institute (IBAHRI) and generous donations from external partners such as Airbnb. IBAHRI continues to assist them in their resettlement process.



https://www.lemondedudroit.fr/institutions/78844-solidarite-avocats-defenseurs-droits-afghans-fonds-dotation-conseil-national-barreaux-fait-un-appel-aux-dons.html (FRANCAIS)

Afghanistan Bar Association head pleads for international help as armed Taliban take over offices, displace leadership


Afghanistan bar association head pleads for international help as armed Taliban take over offices, displace leadership

The President of the Afghanistan Independent Bar Association, Rohullah Qarizada, went on Twitter Wednesday appealing for international assistance after armed Taliban took over the Association’s offices in Kabul. He said “fifty armed Taliban came in AIBA and forcibly took over Bar.” The incursion occurred Tuesday in the wake of a Taliban cabinet directive authorizing the Ministry of Justice to strip the AIBA of its lawyer licensing authority and vest that instead in the Ministry. 

Commenting on the takeover of the AIBA office, Qarizada insisted: “The bar is independent, non-governmental, and non-political. The Bar did not receive any funding from the government.”

A JURIST correspondent in Kabul says a Ministry of Justice letter to the AIBA shown in Qarizada’s tweet refers to the Taliban Cabinet Decision No. 10 dated November 14, 2021. According to the letter the Ministry of Justice should regulate affairs related to the AIBA, especially the issuing of licenses. Our correspondent adds: “But the Cabinet decision does not state anything regarding the structure of AIBA. The Ministry interpreted the decision as authorizing it to bring AIBA under its structure and requested lawyers to obtain licenses from them. The person appointed as the new AIBA head is said to be part of the Ministry of Justice but has no relevant experience.”

The Afghanistan Independent Bar Association was formed in 2008 with the assistance of the International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute (IBAHRI) and previously received support from USAID. At last count, before the Taliban takeover, the Association had more than 2,500 registered lawyers practicing in the Afghan courts. According to the IBAHRI, the AIBA is “the only bar association in the world to have a quota for women on all executive committees and at least one vice-president must be a woman.” At this time it is uncertain what impact AIBA “nationalization” will have on women in the Association’s leadership or member ranks.






https://www.onufemmes.fr/urgence-afghanistan (FRANCAIS)



UK: Home Office urged to help ‘abandoned’ Afghan judges and lawyers


he Law Society says it is continuing to receive ‘desperate messages’ from judges and lawyers in Afghanistan and is urging the Home Office to open a new resettlement scheme immediately.

Law Society president I. Stephanie Boyce said: ‘We have received scores of desperate messages from people who dedicated their lives to building Afghanistan’s justice system and upholding the rule of law and are now in hiding with their families.

‘Judges, lawyers, prosecutors and others who worked in the justice system tell us they are receiving death threats from the Taliban and prisoners they helped convict – many of them terrorists – who are now roaming the country seeking revenge on those who brought them to justice.

‘Our Afghan colleagues are terrified, without work or money, and moving with their families from hiding place to hiding place in fear for their lives. These champions of justice tell us they feel abandoned by the international community, including the UK, with which they worked with so closely to establish law and order in pre-Taliban Afghanistan.’

The Society has been working closely with the government and international partners to assist in evacuating lawyers at risk. However, Boyce said it was unacceptable that the Afghan Citizens Resettlement Scheme was still not open more than three months after Kabul fell.

‘Judges, lawyers, and prosecutors must be eligible for resettlement under this scheme and considered within the first 5,000 to be granted indefinite leave to remain under it,’ she added.

A government spokesperson said: ‘We undertook the UK’s biggest and fastest emergency evacuation in recent history, helping over 15,000 people to safety from Afghanistan who we are continuing to support. The Afghan Citizens Resettlement Scheme is one of the most generous schemes in our country’s history and will give up to 20,000 further people at risk a new life in the UK. We continue to work at pace to open the scheme amid a complex and changing picture, working across government and with partners such as UNHCR to design the scheme.’

The Gazette understands that the scheme will not have an application process. Instead, like the Vulnerable Persons Resettlement Scheme, eligible people will be prioritised and referred for resettlement to the UK.






Greece Becomes Safe Haven for Dissident Afghan Women


https://www.gisti.org/spip.php?article6645 (FRANCAIS)

Greece Temporarily Hosts 26 Female Lawyers From Afghanistan


Greece Temporarily Hosts 26 Female Lawyers From Afghanistan - Foreign Ministry

A group of 26 female lawyers and judges, along with their families, have arrived in Greece from Afghanistan and will stay there temporarily before being resettled in other countries, the Greek Foreign Ministry said Friday

A group of 26 female lawyers and judges, along with their families, have arrived in Greece from Afghanistan and will stay there temporarily before being resettled in other countries, the Greek Foreign Ministry said Friday.

“Twenty-six women judges and lawyers, accompanied by their family members, arrived in Athens last night via Tbilisi,” the ministry said in a statement.

The women and their families will stay in Greece until “the process for their transfer and settlement in other Western countries that have expressed their willingness to accept them is completed,” according to the ministry.

Earlier in SeptemberAthens accepted seven former Afghan female lawmakers with their families pending their resettlement in the United States.

In both cases, the Greek Foreign Ministry has been working with the Migration and Asylum Ministry to ensure that the country welcomes a certain amount of Afghan migrants who fled their homeland in fear of the Taliban (a terrorist group, banned in Russia), as stipulated by Greece‘s international humanitarian assistance commitments.









Lawyer Thanasis Kampagiannis

LWB Greece expresses its urgent concern and calls for international attention on a new crackdown on lawyers defending human rights and liberties in the context of the pandemic. LWB has been informed by reliable sources about the following alleged incidents:

On 6/12/2020, in the 12th anniversary of the murder by a police bullet of the 15 year old Alexis Grigoropoulos, the chief of police issued a decision forbidding to citizens to pay a tribute to the deceased child by leaving a flower to the monument of his death respecting all social distancing measures, and thus make a point about the struggle against injustice and police brutality and impunity.

In order to avert such a tribute of by-passers and ensure respect to the Chief’s decision, thousands of policemen were sent to the vicinity of the place where Alexis was murdered; the police had an order to detain by-passers in this area, allegedly because they did not comply with the measures taken due to the pandemic.

Two high profile lawyers went on spot to defend the rights of the people who, after the intervention of the police, had now become a “spontaneous gathering” of approximately 50 people, being denied of their freedom of movement without being given any information about the ground of such restriction.

The people’s lawyers also became target of the described attack to the Rule of Law.

Lawyer Thanasis Kampagiannis, a member of the Board of the Athens Bar Association, and lawyer Costas Papadakis, also widely known for his anti-fascist defense, were arbitrarily arrested while performing their duties.

They were initially „adduced“ to the police directorate, placed in a bus together with dozens of the people who had asked for their legal support.

The lawyers were then arbitrarily detained for hours.

After a few hours in detention it became clear, though, that the citizens, as well as the lawyers, were not adduced, but arrested, on the pretext of allegedly breaching pandemic’s restriction of movement measures; clearly, the lawyers, since the onset of their encounter with the policemen, were on spot in the context of their Function: they were asked by people to defend and uphold their human rights.




Two lawyers on duty arrested during rallies; they filed against Police



Greece: Athens Bar Association issued a scorching statement after two lawyers were arrested


Over 370 People Detained At Teen Murder Commemoration Protest In Athens -  Reports | Pakistan Point

Police detained a total of 374 people on Sunday in Athens, of which 135 were turned into arrests, for the violation of the Covid-19 lockdown measures during protest/rallies held on the occasion of the 12th anniversary of the assassination of Alexandros Grigoropoulos.

Two lawyers, Thanasis Kampagiannis and Costas Papadakis were among those initially detained but were later released. According to SKAI TV, some of the suspects were transferred to the Attica Directorate of Foreigners. The same sources say that a total of twelve attempts at holding rallies were prevented.

The Athens Bar Association issued a press bulletin expressing its stern protestation to the Police and the Ministry of Citizen Protection over the detainment and arrest of its members, stating the act was a serious blow to the core of the rule of law and the essence of their legal practice.


Two lawyers on duty arrested during rallies; they filed against Police


Greece/Albania: Three convicts get life terms for killing lawyer

October 10, 2019


An Athens court handed life terms to three Albanian convicts on Thursday after finding them guilty of the murder of Athens lawyer Michalis Zafeiropoulos in 2017.

Following a prosecutor’s proposal for an exemplary punishment, the court sentenced Ibrahim Brahimai, who shot the lawyer, to life, plus an additional 11 years.

Claudian Lekotsai, the head of a criminal gang believed to have operated in Attica’s high-security Korydallos Prison, and Olti Dulce also received life sentences after being found guilty as moral instigators of the murder.

Zafeiropoulos’ widow, Vicky Zafeiropoulou, expressed her gratitude for the verdict, noting however that nothing would change for the three convicts, who are already in prison for other crimes.

“Nothing will change for me or my children either,” she said.


One Albanian arrested for the murder of lawyer Michalis Zafeiropoulos

Albanian Duo Planned to Wound Greek Lawyer, But Killed Him

Prominent lawyer shot dead in his office in downtown Athens