November 15th 2007 - In a continuation of the government's official campaign of harassment, the Greek government has concocted new charges to press against the monks.  Three individuals appeared at the monastery gates requesting to "inspect" the antiquities at the monastery on behalf of the Greek government.  When the monk asked for their official identification to verify they were in fact Greek government officials, the men refused and left.  Now they have filed charges against Abbott Methodios of the monastery for "refusing entry" to Greek government officials.  Of course, if they had been allowed access to the antiquities without having asked for identification, the Greek government of Ms. Dora Bakoyannis would have prosecuted them for improper care of antiquities. When you are dealing with a corrupt government, as Greece was ranked by the impartial Transparency International, you can't win. 
November 2007 - The Greek Government of Mt Athos, under the administration of Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis, continues the blockade of all humanitarian deliveries to Esphigmenou monastery.  As the monks continue to lose weight and become ill from the denial of food and medicine, Ms. Bakoyannis continues to prohibit the visitation of doctors to the monastery to provide medical care.  The monks are citizens of the EU and citizens of Greece, a NATO ally.  As death hangs over the monks while they wither away, Ms. Bakoyannis does nothing to lift the land and sea embargo enforced by the Greek Police and Greek Coast Guard under her control, even for humanitarian reasons.   And she hopes to one day become Prime Minister of Greece.  God help us all.

Items under embargo:

  • All food deliveries.

  • Medical Supplies. 

  • Physician's visits prohibited (monastery has diabetic monks and heart patients).

  • Fuel for heating, cooking etc.


Other inhumane actions by Ms. Bakoyannis Greek government:

  • Monastery's fishing boat has been refused fishing rights and threatened with seizure by Greek Authorities.

  • Monastery's telephone line has been cut to prevent outside world of learning of this human rights abuse.

  • Electricity in Monastery's small dairy farm has been cut off.

  • Monastery's Farm Tractor used to till the land has been seized by the Greek Police.

  • Greek Special Forces Police in numbers exceeding 200 men were deployed, on two separate occasions, to violently remove monks from the Monastery, but both times the plans were foiled when the world was alerted by this website to the Greek Government's plan.

  • Greek Police chief of Mount Athos has yet to arrest any of the well known, marauding gang sledgehammer wielding men who have TWICE attacked the fathers of Esphigmenou Monastery, with crowbars and sledge hammers, sending seven fathers with serious injuries to the hospital.  Instead of arresting the men responsible, who are under the blessing of Patriarch Bartholomew, the Greek government prosecuted the victims, the monks of Esphigmenou and sentenced them to two year prison terms.

  • Vendor with truck, attempting to sell food to the Esphigmenou monks and provide a living for himself and his family, was arrested by Greek police and banned from entering Mt. Athos again, for a period of 5 years.  This not only denied food to the monks, but deprived the vendor's family of its ability to earn a living.

  • Greek area fishermen, who take refuge during storms at the Monastery's dock, are fined by the Greek Coast Guard 100- 200 Euros for taking refuge at the Monastery.

  • Patriarch Bartholomew, in violation of the Mt. Athos Charter, created an imposter brotherhood with the same name "Esphigmenou".  The impostor brotherhood has tried to confuse the outside world by writing letters informing the general public and foreign governments that all is well at Esphigmenou Monastery.  The letters are signed by the impostor and illegally elected Abbott Chrysostomos. 

  • The above are glaring violations not only of the Mount Athos Charter, but also numerous Articles of the U.N. Charter on Human Rights, the European Union Charter on Human Rights and a number of International Treaties dealing with basic human rights, to which the Greek Government is signatory to and is now violating.


PLEASE CALL and fax often, these Greek officials who are responsible for, and can stop, the persecution of the monks, and ask that all rights of the Monastery be restored. Please continue to check back and do not stop your actions until this persecution stops.  Ask them to end the blockade, stop the State District Attorney's V. Florides Court harassment and intimidation trial of the monastery scheduled for November 2007 in Thessalonika's Criminal Court; ask them to disband the imposter Esphigmenou brotherhood of Archimandrite Chrysostomos Katsileris who has been empowered by Patriarch Bartholomew and the Greek Government to confiscate the monastery's bank accounts, food deliveries, vehicles, the retirement checks of monks, and engage in a host of other abominable actions unfit for men of the cloth, and unfit for men who call themselves Christians: CALL NOW, pick up the telephone and speak to them in English. Tell them, the World is watching. The European people, The Russian people and the authorities are watching, as well as the Americans, the English, the Australians, and countless others around the World are watching to see if Greek Justice has improved from the last Court Case of  the Thessalonika Court, where the evidence presented in Court, did not matter.  There is no need for any further embarrassing Greek Court Trials. What Can I Do to Help?


May 17, 2007 - Thessaloniki, Greece -  Police and the Coast Guard used intimidation and physical force to prevent more than 150 Greek citizens in  Ouranoupolis, a port town outside of Mt. Athos, from visiting Esphigmenou Monastery.  The crime?  Their papers were not in order. 


Authorities said pilgrims at the port of Ouranoupolis were stopped from boarding a boat to the Orthodox Christian sanctuary of Mount Athos, where they were traveling to Esphigmenou Monastery.


The coast guard said the pilgrims were not carrying "permits" required to enter the monastic sanctuary.  This is all too familiar theme, from the long and storied chapters of Greek Government harassment, which has continued, unabated against the monastery, its supporters, or anyone trying to visit Esphigmenou Monastery for years.  The Greek Government has taken an extremely hard line, filled with religious abuses, reminiscent of the Cold War era, embracing Stalinist tactics at will against anyone who opposes them.


See story from May 16, 2007, International Herald Tribune


March 5, 2007 - In a continuation of the government's official campaign of harassment, the Greek government police chief on Karyes Mt. Athos, Mr. Demetrios Kondos, has demanded that the monastery remove their vehicle from Mt. Athos.  This is the same police chief who up until this very moment, has not arrested or filed charges against the marauding gang of violent individuals who have repeatedly attacked the monks of Esphigmenou, sending seven monks to the hospital with critical injuries in their most recent vicious attack.  While Mr. Kondos ignores violent criminals, he persecutes the peaceful monks of Esphigmenou who seek only to be left alone to pray in peace in their monastery. Please call Ms. Dora Bakoyannis at +30-210-368-1800 and demand that she fire Mr. Kondos as the police chief in Karyes and put in a police chief who will protect the monks of Esphigmenou from their violent attackers.  It's no wonder Transparency International recently rated Greece behind Botswana and just above Namibia in its annual government corruption perception index.  Tell Ms. Bakoyannis to end this disgraceful kind of governance she has brought to her post as Foreign Minister and which she someday hopes to bring to all of Greece as Prime Minister.  Demand that she fire Mr. Kondos as a first step to restore international integrity to the reputation of Greece which she is dragging through the mud with her Turkish style persecution of these Orthodox Christian monks.
January 29, 2007 - In another escalation of the Greek Government's official campaign of persecution, harassment and intimidation against the monks of the Holy and Sacred Monastery of Esphigmenou, Greek prosecutor Vasilis Floridis of Thessalonica, has trumped up charges of embezzlement against the monks.  Click hear to hear the BBC interview with George Dalacouras, the Greek governor of Mt Athos, which totally exposes the prosecution's case as baseless, and another act of persecution against these peaceful and defenseless monks.