The concert against racism that was supposed to be held on the emblematic St. Panteleimon Square in Athens last Saturday did not take place but remains among the recent days’ hottest topics.
Prominent functionary of the far right party LAOS had been disaffiliated after taking part in a racist rally of the organization Golden Dawn. Pictures of Nikolaos Toutouzas were published in the press which documented his participation in the ‘anti-rallies’ on St. Panteleimon Square. They prevented leftist organizations and immigrants to hold a concert against the building of the wall against immigration along the Greek-Turkish land border.
The message says that " Nikolaos Toutouzas was disaffiliated because of his participation in extreme nondemocratic events following the decision of the leader of the LAOS party George Karadzaferis".
The photographic lens captured the party’s candidate for mayor of the city of Thebes during the last local elections along with members of the Golden Dawn. He had a helmet and crowbar in hand and took part in the clashes with the police in front of the St. Panteleimon Church.
Extradite Racism indicated the participation of the candidate for mayor in the provocative anti-rallies on Saturday. According to the announcement of the organization, pictures that were uploaded in the Indymedia website showed how Nikolaos Toutouzas held a crowbar and participated in the protest rally which spolied the realization of the concert against racism.
The news was quickly circulated in the city of Thebes as well as in the virtual blogs space. One of the blogs contained the first response of Nikolaos Toutouzas who explained that he had been there to support the local residents. As for the concert, he said that this had been "the will of the district’s residents. We did not do anything but just supported their request."
This is what the municipal councilor Nikolaos Mihaloliakos, elected with the ballot of the racist organization Golden Dawn, stated at the meeting of the municipal council of Athens.
"The residents did not want the concert to be held. Good night. Enjoy the Pakistanis and Bangladeshis who you turned into Greeks and who voted for you," he said and raised his right hand for the Nazi salute before leaving the room. It was addressed to Petros Constantinou - municipal councilor from the left party ANTARSIA or revolution in English, and one of the main organizers of the concert that wasn’t held - after a very dynamic dialogue between them.
Athens Mayor George Kaminis said that "it is not acceptable to make Nazi salutes here. I do not want to attach to it greater importance than necessary. It is huge as symbolism." The former Mayor Nikitas Kaklamanis also said that things affecting the democratic polity should not happen in the hall of the municipal council.
Golden Dawn’s municipal councilor said a little later that the representative of ANTARSIA had challenged him by calling him a fascist. "I responded to his hysterical screams that I make fascist propaganda by raising my right hand. This salute is Nazi for some, for others it is Greek, and Roman for third. It was not intended for anyone else from the municipal council except for the representative of ANTARSIA.
Furthermore, this salute is not prohibited by law. If they want to make concerts on the square of St. Panteleimon, then we will organize one on the square of Eksarhia," said Nikolaos Mihaloliakos and further heated the atmosphere by mentioning the place where anarchists and members of extreme leftist organizations gather.