Thousands of supporters of the Golden Dawn party staged a rally outside its offices in central Athens after riot police blocked a group of anti-fascist demonstrators from marching on the building.
From Financial Times:
Police buses were parked across a main road to keep the rival groups apart and the anti-fascists dispersed without incident. “Politicians are crooks and traitors . . . Golden Dawn will win,” the crowd shouted, waving blue and white Greek flags to emphasise the party’s nationalist credentials, instead of the red flags with a black Golden Dawn emblem that usually appear at party events.
“We came to show support but other people in our apartment building who voted for Golden Dawn were unwilling because of the recent events,” said a woman who gave her name as Angeliki. “We don’t feel ashamed.”
Mihaloliakos and his colleagues were jailed in September to await trial on charges of running a "criminal organisation" following the fatal stabbing of a communist rapper by a self-confessed Golden Dawn supporter.
As the crowd cheered, Ilias Kasidiaris, the party spokesman, demanded “the immediate release of our party leader and his colleagues who have been wrongfully imprisoned . . . Golden Dawn is a legitimate political party.”
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Parliament voted this week to cancel state funding for Golden Dawn, while four more lawmakers have been stripped of their parliamentary immunity from prosecution.
Prosecutors are investigating dozens of attacks by alleged Golden Dawn supporters, mainly against Pakistani immigrants, as well as the party’s alleged involvement in protection rackets and weapons smuggling.