An almost unbelievable event took place yesterday in the port of Piraeus. A 36-year-old resident of Agios Nikolaos in Crete wanted to board the Blue Horizon ferry belonging to Attica Group, whose destination was the port of Heraklion. Unfortunately, when he was already at the ship's gate, several members of the ship's crew began to push the man, preventing him from boarding. After a short struggle which took place between the Cretan and the sailors, he was pushed by them from the gate at the moment when the ship began to leave the shore. The man lost his balance, fell into the water and drowned in front of the eyes of passengers on board other ships that were in the port at the time. Despite the fact that the victim tried to stay on the surface of the water for a while, fighting the waves all the time, none of the perpetrators even made an attempt to fish the man out of the water. The ship just slowly moved away from the shore closing the gate as if nothing had happened, and in the meantime the resident of Agios Nikolaos drowned.
An investigation was launched immediately. As it turned out, the Cretan had a ticket for this ferry. Unfortunately, he tried to get on the ferry at a time when the crew was already preparing to leave the ship. At the last moment, he ran to the still abandoned gate, where he met with the aggression of the crew. However, even such a situation does not in any way justify the behavior of seafarers.
Image: Το πλήρωμα έσπρωξε από το Blue Horizon στον θάνατο τον 36χρονο τώθηκε στο λιμάνι Πειραιά pic.twitter.com/FdzFTliZLg— kakajason (@kakajason50) September 5, 2023
Today in the port of Heraklion, there were protests by the inhabitants of Crete in front of the Blue Horizon ship. Similar assemblies were also held in Agios Nikolaos and Piraeus. The gathered people did not hide their rage and words of indignation. Already today, the four defendants appeared before the Magistrates' Court in Piraeus, where they heard the charge of involuntary manslaughter. They are the ship's captain, chief mate, seaman and deck officer. The four arrested were also charged with violating the provisions of the Maritime Code. After the autopsy, the main cause of death was drowning as a result of head injuries.
Politicians also speak harshly about this scandalous event. Heraklion mayoral candidate Alexis Kalokairinos said, “This inhumane behavior and even criminal treatment of another human being must not leave us merely spectators. It is unimaginable what happened and led to the loss of life. This is not only an unacceptable and reprehensible act. It's unbearable. We all have a responsibility to be vigilant and ensure that we never experience similar situations again. After all, the culture and mentality of our country's navy, which filled us and filled us with pride, has absolutely nothing to do with such inhumane acts."
Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis also spoke: “Like all of us, today I feel disgust and horror at the unimaginable end that befell another human being in the port of Piraeus. The mind cannot hold it, nor elemental morality will tolerate it."