Friday

25th May 2018

Street murder highlights Greek hate culture

The mayors of Athens warned against the increase in racist attacks against minorities and immigrants on Thursday (16 August) as Greek authorities continue to round up and arrest undocumented migrants throughout the country.

“When fellow human beings are being stabbed on an almost daily basis, society has to be alert and the state has to lead the perpetrators to justice,” said Athens Mayor Giorgos Kaminis, reported Greek daily Ekathimerini.

Dear EUobserver reader

Subscribe now for unrestricted access to EUobserver.

Sign up for 30 days' free trial, no obligation. Full subscription only 15 € / month or 150 € / year.

  1. Unlimited access on desktop and mobile
  2. All premium articles, analysis, commentary and investigations
  3. EUobserver archives

EUobserver is the only independent news media covering EU affairs in Brussels and all 28 member states.

♡ We value your support.

If you already have an account click here to login.

  • Several hundred cases of violence against migrants in Greece have been documented by NGOs in the past month (Photo: Zalmai)

On Sunday, a 19-year-old Iraqi man died of stab wounds after being attacked by five men in central Athens.

Witnesses told police the gang had attempted to attack a Moroccan and a Romanian but both managed to flee before the five men unleashed their brutality upon the Iraqi.

“Such attacks are unacceptable and the authorities must do all within their power to stem their rise,” deputy Europe and Central Asia programme director at Amnesty International, Jezerca Tigani, said in a statement on Wednesday.

A spokesperson for the UN agency for refugees (UNHCR) in Athens told this website on Friday that the attacks are now almost a daily occurrence.

Those that carry out of the attacks, she said, “work almost undisturbed” as police have failed to convict anyone linked to the violence. Small gangs on motorcycles typically carry out the attacks.

“They [migrants] are really scared to go [and] report and press charges because they may be arrested if they do,” said the spokesperson.

She said police dissuade victims from pressing charges by telling them they have to pay €100. She also noted that victims and witnesses are offered no protection.

In another incident, two Pakistani men were attacked in their home on Sunday evening after being beaten by unidentified men. Both ended up in the hospital.

Fifteen men in motorcycles belonging to an extreme right-wing group, reportedly tossed flares into a prayer room for Muslim worshippers on Thursday in Pireus.

The mayor of Topeiro, near Xanthi, said thugs are now targeting the Muslim community.

“We warn this small group of dangerous, idiotic thugs that we will stand in the way of their plans. We will find them and stop them,” he said.

Greek authorities launched a round up of undocumented migrants earlier this month. The on-going campaign named after the Greek god of hospitality - "Xenius Zeus" – has so far detained around 8,000 people.

Those without proper identification are arrested and deported. Some 1,660 have been arrested and placed in administrative detention, said the Greek police on Wednesday.

A report by the NGO Human Rights Watch out in July documented dozens of attacks against migrants in and around Athens. The NGO recorded 300 assaults in Athens in the first half of 2011. The Athens police, for its part, recorded only 9 incidents of hate crime for the whole of 2011.

Greece to deport undocumented migrants

Authorities in Greece rounded up 6,030 undocumented migrants in Athens over the weekend and arrested 1,525 for not meeting the legal conditions for residence.

New GDPR enforcer says complaints are imminent

The European Data Protection Board is a new EU body tasked with enforcing the EU's privacy laws with powers to impose massive fines. Its head Andrea Jelinek told reporters complaints against companies are expected to be immediate.

Eight countries to miss EU data protection deadline

The EU starts enforcing its general data protection regulation on 25 May - but Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary, Lithuania and Slovenia won't be ready. The delay will cause legal uncertainty.

Opinion

The dangers of resurgent nationalism in Greece

Virulent nationalism in Greece has been stirred up in the context of austerity and renewed negotiations with Macedonia. Recent attempts by the government to address the inequalities suffered by LGBT persons have also been met with a reactionary backlash.

News in Brief

  1. Italy set to pick eurosceptic finance minister
  2. UK foreign minister fooled by Russian pranksters
  3. Rajoy ally gets 33 years in jail for corruption
  4. Close race as polls open in Irish abortion referendum
  5. Gazprom accepts EU conditions on gas supplies
  6. Facebook tells MEPs: non-users are not profiled
  7. Commission proposes ending France deficit procedure
  8. UK households hit with Brexit income loss

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of MinistersOECD Report: Gender Equality Boosts GDP Growth in Nordic Region
  2. Centre Maurits Coppieters“Peace and reconciliation is a process that takes decades” Dr. Anthony Soares on #Brexit and Northern Ireland
  3. Mission of China to the EUMEPs Positive on China’s New Measures of Opening Up
  4. Macedonian Human Rights MovementOld White Men are Destroying Macedonia by Romanticizing Greece
  5. Counter BalanceControversial EIB-Backed Project Under Fire at European Parliament
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersIncome Inequality Increasing in Nordic Countries
  7. European Jewish CongressEU Leaders to Cease Contact with Mahmoud Abbas Until He Apologizes for Antisemitic Comments
  8. International Partnership for Human RightsAnnual Report celebrates organization’s tenth anniversary
  9. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Cooperation Needed on Green Exports and Funding
  10. Mission of China to the EUPremier Li Confirms China Will Continue to Open Up
  11. European Jewish CongressCalls on Brussels University to Revoke Decision to Honour Ken Loach
  12. Sustainable Energy Week 2018"Lead the Clean Energy Transition"- Register and Join Us in Brussels from 5 to 7 May