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In recent years, Greece has witnessed a sharp reduction in hate crime attacks, which observers attribute, first of all, to the harsh position taken by the authorities in relation to the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn party.

A total of 19 racist attacks were observed in 2013, 2 of which were fatal to the victims and 91 people were harmed. More than half of the cases happened at Athens (2 dead and 49 affected). The most major cases regarding the number of victims were the shooting of strawberry pickers in Nea Manolada, the breaking up of an anti-fascist demonstration in Athens on September 18, and September 13 attack made on anti-fascists (32, 31 and 9 respectively were affected). 37 people were injured at the hands of police.

In Kavala, right-wing radicals from the party “Golden Dawn” on January 9, attacked the Turkish Consul.

In mid-January in Athens due to the fact that his bicycle allegedly blocked a way for a motorcycle, which belonged to one of the activists of the far-right party “Golden Dawn,” a native of Pakistan was murdered.

A Somali immigrant was beaten up in Athens in January.

In February police officers beat up a Syrian refugee in Corinth.

In early March, a group of teenagers in Larissa have smashed up a shop owned by a native of Pakistan, and have beaten his son.

On March 10, an immigrant from Syria was beaten up by police as he started filming a clash in prison for migrants with a mobile phone .

On April 2, ten members of the ultra-nationalists party “Golden Dawn” attacked two immigrants in Chania. However, the two “Golden Dawn” members were injured in a clash with the locals who came to the rescue, and leading them candidate for deputy Stelios Vlamakis was thrown into the sea.

On April 12, it was reported that in Thessaloniki a bus driver – member of the “Golden Dawn” party – kicked two immigrant passengers off the bus. On April 22, police officers attacked a migrant woman in Athens .

On June 27, 3 migrants from Pakistan who refused deportation were severely assaulted by the police at Athens airport.

On August 13, a crowd of 20 people supporting of the “Golden Dawn” attacked 2 immigrants from Pakistan in Heraklion (Crete).

On September 13, 9 communists were seriously injured after the attack of 30 right-wing radicals, including President of Piraeus' Union of Metalworkers Sotiris Poulikogianis. On September 16, a Roma child was attacked. On the night of September 18 in Athens, a member of “Golden Dawn” killed the Greek anti-fascist musician Pavlos Fyssas. On September 18, during a large public anti-fascist demonstration in Athens, police assaulted demonstrators with batons and used tear gas. 31 protestors sought medical help.

On November 30 an Egyptian migrant was attacked.

On December 9, a journalist Panagiotis Bousios said that he and his cameraman had been beaten by members of “Golden Dawn”. On December 28, a Roma street trader was beaten in Athens.

There were cases of neo-Nazi murders by unidentified persons. On the night of November 1 in Athens 2 supporters of “Golden Dawn” were killed, previously-unknown “People's revolutionary forces” took responsibility for these murders.

After Golden Dawn's leaders were arrested, in September 2013, we witnessed the battalions retracting, the racist attacks drastically decreasing and their intensity becoming milder. In 2013, the Network for Recording of Incidents of Racist Violence recorded 166 racist attacks with at least 320 victims, while in 2014 these incidents were reduced to half, with 81 attacks and more than one hundred victims.

Nevertheless, in 2015 and specifically as the beginning of the trial was approaching, we witnessed a small but noticeable increase in racist attacks. We witnessed organized assaults from battalions and solitary perpetrators, while the targets were immigrants, young people with a “different” appearance and it was transgender people who suffered the most brutal attacks.

January 1st: Intrusion to a guest house for underage refugees with a gun and racist slurs in Oreokastro, Thessaloniki. The perpetrator was the former president of the Alexander Technological Institute of Thessaloniki. January 25th: Attack against members of Syriza and Antarsya (a small leftist political party) in Keratsini outside a school functioning as a voting station. January 29th: Brutal beating of an immigrant woman from Bulgaria in Istiaia, Evoia. Her employer and his friends tortured her and left her bleeding on the side of the road. January 31st: Forty neonazis attack young people at the metro station Evangelismos after a meeting of Golden Dawn for Imia.

Feb. 7 th: Μirella Lopez, of Peruvian decent, with her 5-year-old kid were verbally assaulted by 3 ticket-inspectors on trolleybus number 20 in Faliro. When she told them that she hadn't managed to renew her bus card, they started swearing at her and tried to drag her out of the bus calling the police. Despite being with crutches, she was cuffed and dragged to the police car. She was taken to the police station of Kallipoli, where a gang of police officers were expecting her. She was attacked verbally, with sexual and sexist remarks. She was separated from her kid and kept locked up for 3 hours cuffed, without water, without access to the toilet and without her heart medicine. Before she was released, a police officer forced her to tear her ID, her bus card and her bank card and told her “now you are not Greek anymore”.

February 9th: The Movement Against Racism and the Fascist Threat denounces the horrific attack against an immigrant in the village Emponas in Rhodes. The man was unconscious and when he regained his consciousness he was in a lot of pain and there was blood coming out of his rectum and during his transfer to the hospital pieces of broken glass were removed. February 14th: Kofeel Mohammed from Bangladesh and Ishmael Mohammed from Pakistan were attacked by three members of the Golden Dawn using brass knuckles. Two of the suspects were arrested following the attacks on Saturday. They were attacked in the Omonia area of downtown Athens. The Bangladeshi man said that he was attacked by three men who claimed they were Golden Dawn members.

In total, according to RVRN, in 2015 there were 273 cases of hate violence, the victims of which were 300 people. The statistics do not include acts of vandalism, which also dealt with immigrants (7 cases), Jews (3 incidents) and Muslims (1 incident).

According to the Racist Violence Registration Network (RVRN), a network of 47 civil society organizations that report hate crimes, between January and December 2018, 117 incidents of racist violence were reported in interviews with victims, with over 130 victims. In 74 incidents, the victims were migrants or refugees based on ethnicity, religion, color, associations of third country nationals, human rights defenders in connection with their assistance to refugees and migrants. In six (6) cases, Greek citizens were targeted because of their skin color, foreign or ethnic origin. In nine (9) incidents, Jewish sacred or symbolic sites and the Jewish community were targeted, and in one (1) incident, a Greek citizen was targeted because of educational activities against anti-Semitism or perceived religion. In 27 incidents, LGBTQI+ people were targeted, including five (5) refugees, asylum seekers, and EU citizens. In 59 incidents, more than one victim was targeted, while in 63 incidents the attack was carried out by a group of at least two people.

RVRN has documented that support for racist violence is increasing as attacks are carried out by groups who proudly profess their extreme xenophobic ideology. Aggressive actions by citizens in everyday aspects of urban life have also been documented.

Between January and December 2019, there were registered 100 incidents of racist violence, with more than 104 victims. In 51 incidents, the victims were migrants, refugees or asylum seekers based on ethnicity, religion and/or color, human rights defenders because of their association with refugees and migrants, and the placement of unaccompanied children. On two occasions, Greek nationals on the basis of foreign or ethnic origin were targeted, and on three occasions, Jewish and Muslim holy or symbolic sites were targeted. In 44 incidents, LGBTQI+ persons and human rights defenders were targeted because of their affiliation to LGBTQI+ groups (of which one third of the countries lacked legal documents/residency status). In 27 incidents, more than one victim was targeted, while in 52 incidents the attack was carried out by a group (of at least two people). Seventy incidents occurred in Athens, mostly near the city center.

In 2019, RVRN also recorded 44 incidents of LGBTQ+ attacks (25 based on gender identity, 16 based on sexual orientation, and three based on sexual orientation/gender identity). Reported attacks on LGBTQI+ people include verbal assaults and physical assaults of any intensity.

During 2020, an unusual year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Network recorded through victim interviews 107 cases of racist violence with the following characteristics:

  • In 74 cases, the targets were migrants, refugees or asylum seekers because of their ethnicity, religion and/or color, human rights advocates because of their association with refugees and migrants, and shelters or institutions providing other services to said groups.
  • In 30 cases, the victims were LGBTQI+ people.
  • In 3 incidents the victims were Greek nationals who were victimized because of their ethnicity.
  • In 50 cases the victims were more than one victim and in 77 cases the attack was carried out by a group (at least 2 persons).

Regarding the profile of the perpetrators:

  • In 23 cases, the offenders were law enforcement officers, and in 4 cases, the offenders were government employees.
  • Fifty-nine incidents involved civilians.
  • In 3 cases, the perpetrators were employers.
  • In 3 cases the victims believed the perpetrators were affiliated with extremist groups.
  • In 13 cases victims identified the perpetrators as mixed groups of civilians and members of extremist groups, and in 2 cases victims reported that they had been harassed by law enforcement officers called in by the perpetrators.
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