Mediterranea: demonstration against sale of Greek islands

Boat and fleet 'occupy' Ionian Meganisi island

04 June, 14:07

    The banner at the Meganisi island The banner at the Meganisi island

    (ANSAmed) - ROME - The Mediterranea sailboat and a fleet of 20 other vessels of various nationality have moored in a bay of the Greek island of Meganisi for a peaceful and symbolic demonstration against the possible property speculation on the beautiful Ionian island, according to international news reports, said a statement issued by the Mediterranea project.
    ''The first to talk about it was influential British newspaper The Guardian (2010) and since then many newspapers and online media outlets until today: a clearance sale of islands is ongoing in the Mediterranean. We know a lot about some and we don't know anything of who knows how many more. What is certain, to make just a few examples, is that the emir of Qatar, who owns the club Paris Saint-Germain, allegedly bought six islands between Ithaca and the mainland in the archipelago of Echinades, including Oxia.
    ''Scorpio was also allegedly sold to Russian magnate Dmitrij Rybolovlev, the former king of fertilizers who owns the Monaco soccer club. ''Media reports also claimed that Chinese entrepreneurs are buying Ionian islands to look for oil, especially between Ithaca and Lefkada, and a well-known British banker allegedly bought the entire southern part of Menganisi to invest in real estate development''.
    The Mediterranea project is a nautical, cultural and scientific expedition and one of its main purposes is to sponsor communication and denounce, if necessary, abuses and injustices damaging populations living on the coast.
    The organization said Wednesday that at midday local time the Mediterranean boat and a fleet of vessels symbolically occupied Meganisi and showed a banner reading: ''This Island Is Ours''.
    Eye witnesses with the expedition said the southern part of the island has already been ruined by dynamite and a bulldozer excavating to build a road which will cost some four million euros. ''This road, which goes from nowhere to nowhere, is a grave environmental wound and a premise for the construction of dozens of villas in one of the Mediterranean's most virgin spots. As anticipated by the media, in fact, British bankers Rotschild allegedly bought the southern part of the island for a real estate project which provides for the construction of dozens of villas for millionaire clients''.
    The symbolic operation will end tomorrow, June 5, when the fleet will leave behind the banner. The operation is aimed at raising the public opinion's awareness over a phenomenon of overbuilding on the Mediterranean coasts and the indiscriminate sale of collective heritage to benefit individuals who want to speculate, the organization noted.
    ''The sea is not on sale. Mediterranean islands are not on sale. They belong to us, to everybody. They cannot be touched'', said the document. (ANSAmed).

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