Athens 17 August, 2012

Press Release

Subject: «Police detention of Transgender Individuals during ‘Xenios Zeus’ Operations».

The Greek Transgender Support Association, a recognized ngo for the support of the rights of the trans community in Greece, is hereby strongly condemning the massive police detention of twenty five (25) trans women on Thursday, August 9th, during the crackdown police operation «Xenios Zeus».

Specifically, on the night of Thursday, August 9th, during a massive police crackdown, 25 trans individuals were taken and detained at the division of Central Police Station of Athens. They were not given sufficient explanation why they were being taken. They were forced to undergo an HIV test, administered by a Center for Disease Control (C.D.C.) doctor, were subsequently found to be HIV-negative and released afterwards.

We, the Greek Transgender Support Association, express our deepest concern, and outright condemnation of the C.D.C.-assisted police crackdown operations. Especially since they target, among others, one of the more vulnerable minorities, namely trans individuals, who are deprived of basic human rights such as the right to work, be insured and access the health services, owing to the GreekState’s refusal to protect trans rights.

We also deem the forced and obligatory tests by the C.D.C. to be in breach of basic human rights. This is because the way the tests are performed, coupled with the complete lack of deontology and the specific conditions under which they take place, are not those of a European country nor of a just State.

At the same time, we question the recent ruling of the Hellenic Data Protection Authority (HDPA), according to which the HDPA calls itself unauthorised to judge the recent and obvious violation by the state of personal data, in the case of the publicization of the identities of hiv-positive people. The HDPA invoked the Spearation of Powers, but at the same time countradicts itself by proposing amendations to the legislature.

We, the Greek Transgender Support Association, express our solidarity towards the hiv-positive individuals who are being prosecuted, and condemns the police crackdown operations, as well as the involvement of the CDC, for endangering and creating abject conditions for the trans community. Furthermore, we express our complete opposition of all police operations that violate human rights based on nationality, race, gender, religious or other beliefs, sexual orientation, and gender identity. We demand that greek legislation protects gender identity by aligning with the Ruling 2008/913/ΔΕΥ regarding the fight against all kinds of discrimination and racism.

We are in active cooperation with grassroots and NGO organizations inside Greece, as well as European organizations for the rights of the trans community. We will defend, in every legal way, the dignity and human rights of trans people.