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CADTM rejoices in the united anti-fascist mobilization in Athens on 7 October 2020 and the judgement against the neo-nazi Golden Dawn party

Thursday 8 October 2020, by CADTM International

The CADTM congratulates demonstrators for the success of the united antifascist mobilisation in Athens this Wednesday 7 October, as well the Athens penal court for its decision to label the neo-nazi Golden Dawn party as a ‘criminal organization’.

It is largely on the streets that the anti-fascist movement has fought the little band of neo-nazi group Golden Dawn, often responsible for lethal violence perpetrated for years against undocumented people and radical left activists. The Greek antifascist movement’s struggle against neo-nazi violence has resulted in a historic victory – a victory for Greece but also for all European peoples.

The criminal court ruled; the party leaders were convicted. They are members of the party’s political council as well as its representatives in parliament. Other defendants were convicted for belonging to the organization and for violence (murder of Pavlos Fyssas, violent attack against Egyptian fishermen, attacks against members of the trade union PAME). The party’s leader, Nikos Michaloliakos, and the man who was his second for years, Ilias Kasidiaris, both admirers of national socialism, were found guilty. The crowd erupted in cheers as the decision was announced.

Javied Aslam, an anti-neonazi Pakistani, had managed to collect thousands of testimonies about aggressions carried out by Golden Dawn, notably from 2010 to 2013. However these testimonies had been ignored for years by the police and ‘competent’ administrations, whereas the group’s crimes were a public knowledge.

The silence was finally broken today.

As reported on several websites, up to 20,000 activists from the left, the radical left and the anarchist movement had gathered on Alexandras avenue in front of Athens’ appeal court this Wednesday 7 October. They waited for a verdict in the Golden Dawn case, the neo-nazi party that entered parliament in 2012 thanks to the Greek crisis. The party was indicted after one of its members murdered Pavlos Fyssas, an anti-fascist rapper, in 2013 and after the attempt to murder two Egyptian fishermen.

Five years of proceedings, 400 hearings, 68 defendants, 154 witnesses, 129 lawyers, for an extraordinary trial. And the first verdicts fell. The Athens court ruled that the party was a criminal organization, which opens the way for further sentences, notably that of Nikos Michaloliakos, the denying leader of Golden Dawn, deemed guilty of leading a criminal organization, but also that of Yorgos Roupakias, the murderer of Pavlos Fyssas. Sentences had not yet been pronounced by lunch time, but they are likely to be heavy. At the same time the police used tear gas and water cannons to disperse the demonstrators gathered in front of the courthouse. CADTM members actively participated in the international solidarity movement asking the Greek judicial system to convict Golden Dawn, notably by supporting the call “They are not innocents”.

Let us remember that Mamadou Bah, a Guinean CADTM member, was ruthlessly attacked by a Golden Dawn commando in 2013 in the streets of Athens and had had to seek refuge in Belgium (see “Droit d’asile pour Mamadou Bah !” and “Victoire ! Mamadou Bah obtient le statut réfugié”.}

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