“The sharpening of the problems make it urgent and necessary for the seamen to organize and participate, to escalate the strike” as the class-oriented seamen’s unions noted in their statement on the decision to continue the sector’s strike. The 48hr strike began on Monday and after it ended on Wednesday, a new 48hr strike was called which will end at 6.00 AM on Friday, 6th of November.
This is the strike response of all the country’s seamen against the new phase of the anti-people offensive being unleashed against them by the government-EU and ship owners.
In total, 54 ships on the central axis that connects Piraeus with the Cyclades, the Dodecanese and Northern Aegean remained immobilized in the docks. The strike had similar success in the ports of Rafina and Lavrio. On the Patras-Italy axis, 5 passenger-vehicle ships under a Greek flag, 5 passenger-vehicle ships with an Italian flag and 3 ferries (RO/RO) also with an Italian flag were immobilized, 700 seamen took part in the strike in this port. There was a large participation in the strike in the Rio-Antirrio ferryboat, and also in the lines that connect Patras with Kefalonia, Kyllene with Zakynthos and Kyllene with Kefalonia.
The demands the seamen are struggling for are related to the social security system, labour rights, the planned reduction of the crew composition on the ships.
The class-oriented forces, the forces of the All-workers Militant Front (PAME), such as the trade unions of the merchant marine engineers, of the engine crews “Stephenson”, of the cooks, of the tug-boat crews, pensioners etc. play the leading role in organizing and protecting the strike both in the port of Piraeus as well as in the other ports. They will continue to intensively prepare for the general strike on the 12th of November. As the class-oriented seamen’s unions stressed: “The seamen must understand the ferocity of the anti-people measures”, and for this reason it “ is an urgent necessity to coordinate the struggle together with the rest of the class-oriented labour movement against this antiworker-antipeople political line of the SYRIZA-ANEL government. This political line aims, together with the ship owners, to abolish the collective labour agreements, reduce the crew composition of the ships, dismantle NAT (the seamen’s pension fund), reduce pensions, increase the age of retirement and rapidly downgrade social-security cover.”