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Another abuse of a foreigner on the island of Salamis

05 November 2012 / 22:11:38  GRReporter
2897 reads

Anastasia Balezdrova

The residents of the village of Ambelakia on the island of Salamis found an immigrant who had been beaten, swollen from the beating and tied to a tree with a chain around his neck. The man was released from the "chains" and taken to hospital. According to unofficial information, he worked in a bakery. His employer suspected him of stealing but instead of seeking assistance from the authorities, he had apparently decided to use the services of people resorting to a faster "method" for justice.

A few hours later, another immigrant wounded in the leg with a sharp object was found in the Athens suburb of Paleo Faliro.

At the same time, the centre of Athens became the theatre of violent attacks against immigrants and their shops. It all started last Wednesday when two men of African origin attacked and seriously wounded a Greek owner of a hairdresser’s with a knife. Since then, tensions in the area around the "Agios Panteleimonas" church have escalated and the residents have organized protests against the rising crime in their neighbourhood. On Friday and Saturday night, they grew into pogroms against lodgings and shops of foreigners, many of whom have been living in Greece for years and completely legally.

One of the shopkeepers, whose shop is facing the hairdresser’s of the victim, told GRReporter about the case. "On the day of the attack, I was in the shop but I did not see what had happened. I heard screams, and then I went and saw a man lying on the ground and he could not say exactly what had happened. As far as I saw, he was wounded in the chest. He uttered that Africans had injured him, and then he was taken to hospital."

So, the meetings of residents began. About 50 people gathered on Friday evening on Mikhail Voda Street, where the hairdresser’s of the attacked is located, and members of Golden Dawn gradually joined them.


Shortly after 8 pm, feelings ran high. According to immigrant organizations, supporters of the xenophobic party stabbed at least one foreigner from Algeria, who just happened to be passing by. Police did not confirm the information. Despite the presence of numerous policemen, some of the protesters started destroying the shops of foreigners who live and work legally in Greece.

Our interlocutor, Mr. Malik, is an Egyptian and has been living in Greece for more than 20 years now. He is married to a Greek woman and has two children. He says he feels threatened by the escalation of tension in the neighbourhood. "When we hear that there will be some kind of gathering, we close earlier. I have told the employee to close and leave if he is alone. I'm also very careful when I am on the street because the Egyptians have recently become a target."

According to Malik, the criminal acts of illegal immigrants of different nationalities have created problems to legitimate ones. "I understand the Greeks who fear for their safety. We also have a problem with illegal immigrants. These people open shops without any documents and work illegally; they do not even have cash tills. It is not difficult. They go to someone who has a licence and give him a specific amount of money to open a second and third shop. And they work that way. Others do not even do that, not to mention that these people live in the shops and even give shelter to others. Some turn them into hotels. We close at 8 pm and they work around the clock and do not pay any taxes. This is not fair."

Because of the frequent attacks on fellow countrymen, a group of members of the Egyptian community will meet tomorrow with the country's ambassador to Greece to seek support and assistance from the Greek authorities through diplomatic channels.

Tags: Crime newsSocietyAttacksImmigrantsEgyptian communityGolden Dawn
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