The news that Nikos Romanos has been released from prison must bring pleasure to the hearts of all anarchists. I have no doubt the the life Nikos has lead up to now was greatly influenced by that event on a Saturday evening in 2008, when, as a teenager out at a cafe with his teenage friend Alexis Grigoropoulos and was by his side when Alexis was shot dead in cold blood by a police officer. No matter his political views before that event, it is obvious that such a cold blood murder of his teenage friend standing beside him, would sharpen his hate of a system that harboured and armed such cold blooded murderers.
https://radicalglasgow.me.ukAnarchist comrade Nikos Romanos was released from prison in Greece yesterday after six years of imprisonment.
Nikos was a close friend of Alexis Grigoropoulos, an anarchist teenager who was murdered in Exarcheia by the police in 2008, sparking the Greek anarchist insurrection.
Nikos Romanos was arrested in February 2013 with 3 more people and charged with attempted armed robbery at the Agricultural Bank and TT Hellenic Postbank in Velvento, Kozani.
He was also sentenced to 18 years in prison for possession and placement of explosive devices in 2012. Among the “targets” was the home of the former Minister of National Defense, Giannos Papantoniou.
The court that originally sentenced Romanos had not admitted any mitigating circumstances, including his good behaviour while in prison but this decision was later reversed by the Supreme Court. Taking the Supreme Court’s decision into account, a Five-member Criminal Appeals Court that reconsidered his case recently reduced his sentence by four years, to 14 years in prison.
This made possible the release of Romanos, whose six years in prison counted “double” due to days of work done while incarcerated, during which time he had also finished high school and sat university entrance exams, getting a place in the Athens TEI School of Management and Economy.
In an interview earlier this year, Nikos stated, “Our goal should be to sharpen the subversive struggle in every form it can take, to transform it into a real danger for every ruler. Part of this process is reconstructing our historical memory, so it can serve as a compass for the strategies of struggle we employ. We should start talking again about the organization of different forms of revolutionary violence, the practices of revolutionary illegalism, and the need to diffuse these in the movement in order to overcome the “politics” (in the dirty and civil meaning of the word) that have infected our circles… Whoever arms his conscience to overthrow the brutal cycle of oppression and exploitation will definitely be the target of vengeful and authoritarian treatment by the regime. This does not mean that we will give up our fight, in the courtroom or elsewhere.”
Anarchists around the world will celebrate the release of Nikos, a comrade who has remained intransigent in his revolutionary values in the face of harsh repression from the state.