Golden Dawn is afraid of justice

May 12, 2015

The trial of the neo-Nazis of Golden Dawn on charges that they run a criminal organization was postponed once again on May 7 after further complaints about the inadequate venue--a specially built courtroom inside Korydallos Prison, west of central Athens, that is too small to accommodate all the defendants and their lawyers, plus the media and observers--and another defendant who asked to have a lawyer appointed for him.

The trial is already three weeks late in getting started. A total of 69 members of Golden Dawn, including all of the fascists' representatives in the previous parliament, have been accused of operating a criminal organization, based specifically on three deadly assaults against immigrants and left-wing activists, including the murder of radical hip-hop artist Pavlos Fyssas in September 2013. In this statement, 11 members of parliament representing SYRIZA who attended the latest trial date call for the prosecution to continue without further delays.

THE MPs of SYRIZA who were present today at the trial of Golden Dawn and at the antifascist rally at Korydallos believe that this trial is a crucial moment for the Greek democracy. That's because after years of immunity and tolerance for their criminal acts, the fascists are finally facing the moment of accountability.

The neo-Nazi Golden Dawn is, at long last, facing justice, with dozens of its members and all of its leading figures sitting in the hot seat, accused of serious criminal actions. Nobody should be fooled by the attempt by Golden Dawn to appear as a "responsible" and "serious" political force, following in the footsteps of Marine Le Pen. Golden Dawn is a criminal organization, with a neo-Nazi ideology--it is a sworn enemy of the rule of democracy.

Golden Dawn is afraid of justice. The absence from the courtroom of Nikolaos Michaloliakos and all of its leading figures is proof of this, as is the delay tactics of some defendants not obtaining attorneys so the court must provide one. The goal is to postpone the trial indefinitely--yet another indication of the neo-Nazis' fearful and contemptuous attitude toward justice.

Golden Dawn leader Nikos Michaloliakos
Golden Dawn leader Nikos Michaloliakos

In the face of these delay tactics, the trial must continue, and under conditions that ensure the widest possible public access, including by transferring the trial to the Court of Appeal in central Athens. The Ministry of Justice must act accordingly--continuing the trial without delay is a basic requirement of democracy and the rule of law.

The issue of addressing neo-Nazism is, of course, not only a matter of the justice. It must be confronted by a mass anti-fascist movement and the whole of society. As members of SYRIZA, we declare that this issue is at the forefront of our priorities.

Signed by SYRIZA MPs: Joanna Gaitani. Maria Kanellopoulou, Evi Karakosta, Kasimati Nina, Basiliki Katrivanou, Panagiota Kozompoli, Fanis Kourempes, Vaso Leva, Christos Mantas, Afroditi Stabouli, Elena Psarrea

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