Macedonian Human Rights Movement International
Rainbow/Vinozhito Denounces Greek Neo-Nazi Interference at Party's First Congress

The European Free Alliance (EFA) - Rainbow denounces the participation of a delegate of the extreme-right neo-nazi Patriotiko Metopo (Patriotic Front) in yesterday's meeting of the Interpartisan Committee on the European elections. Those who only a few days ago in Thessaloniki/Solun attempted to violently disrupt the congress of a legitimate political party, members of the neo-fascist group "Chryssi Avghi” (Golden Dawn), and supporters of Patriotiko Metopo leader, Makis Vorides, who calmly declare that their intention was to immolate people (Stochos newspaper 2.6.2004), yesterday sat alongside the other Greek political parties as though nothing had happened.

We are distressed by the attitude of the Minister of Internal Affairs, Mr. Prokopis Pavlopoulos, when our delegate to the Committee requested that the neo-nazi delegate be barred from participating in the meeting. To avoid taking a stand on the matter, Mr. Pavlopoulos, like a second Pontius Pilate, "washed his hands,” content to refer only to the Supreme Court pronouncement of the nominees.

We also regret and are especially disappointed by the stance of all the parties that participated in the Interpartisan Committee (with the exception of OAKKE, the Organization for the Reconstruction of the Communist Party). None of the other delegates had the courage and political fortitude to condemn - even belatedly - the rioting in Thessaloniki/Solun much less to request the withdrawal of its ringleaders from the meeting. This incident demonstrates yet again the large democratic deficit that exists in Greek politics and society.

Consequently, EFA-Rainbow had no other choice but to withdraw from the meeting, citing, in addition to the moral aspect, the legal question of the meeting's validity under such a configuration. At the same time EFA-Rainbow is obliged to denounce this unprecedented state of affairs to all competent national, European, and international bodies. It furthermore intends to take legal action, seeking the punishment at the criminal level for those persons who believe that they can violate every concept of the law and democratic culture, and terrorize, destroy, and even threaten the life of anyone opposed to their "patriotic” but essentially wholly nazi views. This they do with the tolerance and tacit support of the country's otherwise democratic political parties.