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HOLOCAUST MONUMENT IN LARISSA VANDALIZED BY ALLEGED CLERGYMAN

In the evening of Monday July 17, 2017, an individual dressed as a monk who calls himself ‘father Kleomenis’ -a cult figure, popular for his bigot ideas and You tube posts- attacked and vandalized the Holocaust Monument in Larissa, situated in the central Jewish Martyrs Square of the city. In his video posted on You Tube, the alleged monk curses the Jews, denies the Holocaust and calls on the local patriots of Larissa to intervene and demolish the Monument. "Father" Kleomenis spits, kicks and throws eggs at the Monument. Some of his characteristic quotes: “Here, we read 6 million! Fairy tails… Shit on their faces, merely 600.000 Hitler wiped out!”. Kleomenis spits the Monument and says: “Satanic Jews”. He kicks the Monument and says: “Curse on your dirty Monuments” and continues: “Worms, Jewish bitches, this has to fall. The stinking Jewishness has to be taken down from Larissa. Rise up! Patriotic organizations of Larissa take it down, bring the bulldozer on!”Local police was notified and legal procedure was enacted. Investigation is ongoing. The Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece (KIS) and the Jewish Community of Larissa issued press releases. The Holy Synod of the Greek Orthodox Church issued an announcement disassociating itself from the "monk" and condemning his actions.

The Municipality of Larissa issued an Announcement condemning the attack. The General Secretary of Religious Affairs George Kalantzis, as well as the General Secretary for Transparency and Human Rights Maria Giannakaki reacted swiftly by providing the Public Prosecutor of Larissa, the Racist Crimes Department of the Police, and the Cyber Crime Police Department with the relevant evidence. The President of the Jewish Community of Larissa pressed charges against the perpetrator. The Greek Helsinki Monitor also pressed charges against the “so called ‘father Kleomenis’ for a series of racist crimes”.

* The Announcement of KIS:

Shame and outrage are the feelings that one feels when realizes what happened in Larissa on Monday July 17, 2017: The shameful and upsetting incident of the desecration of the Holocaust Monument of Larissa –the first Holocaust Monument erected in Greece in 1987, in the memory of the Greek Jews deported and exterminated in the Nazi death camps. This highly significant Monument was vulgarly vandalized, with offensive expressions and brutal actions, by a robed clergyman who apparently has no affiliation to the Greek Orthodox Church.  On the same day leaflets of relevant anti-Semitic content were strewn across the Monument and the Square of Jewish Martyrs of Larissa. The case is being handled by the Police and the justice system. The Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece asked the competent  Authorities to arrest the perpetrator and bring him to justice.

In addition KIS expresses the Greek Jewry’s belief that the society of Larissa and all local institutions will firmly condemn the incident, will isolate the perpetrators and will treat with respect the Holocaust Monument of Larissa and the Jewish Community which is an integral part of the city, that they will ultimately respect the city’s very cultural heritage and civilization, as the people of Larissa have always done in the course of history.

Athens July 18, 2017

Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece

 

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PRESS RELEASE OF THE JEWISH COMMUNITY OF LARISSA FOR THE VANDALIZATION OF THE HOLOCAUST MONUMENT

In the afternoon of  Monday July 17, 2017, in Larisa, Greece, the so-called Father Cleomenis with his clerical clothing, well-known from the social media for his racist mania, has defiled the Holocaust Monument of the town.

With vulgar insults, kicking and throwing eggs and flyers of anti-Semitic content at the Holocaust Monument of the town of Larisa, “Father Cleomenis” denied the Holocaust and invited all the self-called “patriotic” organizations of Larissa to stand up in order to destroy the Memorial and the “Jewishness” of the city of Larissa. The incident has been filmed by his associates and has been already uploaded to Youtube.

The Jewish Community of Larissa expresses its abhorrence for this violent incident that just took place in a town whose citizens and local authorities show respect and honor to this Monunent; in a town that has never experienced similar incidents in the past. Our Community expresses its satisfaction for the immediate mobilization of the Police Authorities.

We feel confident that in the town of Larissa, fanaticism, intolerance, racist discourse or any other similar phenomenon will be isolated and will be fought at its birth.

Athens, July 18, 2017
JEWISH COMMUNITY OF LARISSA

 
GREEK ARTIST COMPARES ECONOMIC CRISIS TO THE HOLOCAUST

Singer Jimmy Panoussis, in an interview published in “To Vima” on June 25, 2017 (on the occasion of his participation in the theatrical comedy of Aristophanes “Peace”), referred to the “Greeks as the new Jews of our times”. Panoussis said: “As the Nazis chose Jews to be their victims, now the neo-nazis and Schäuble’s people have picked us, the Greeks”. This comparison of the current Greek economic crisis to the Holocaust was criticized Greek Jewish leaders. In an article by Victor Eliezer (EJP, July 4, 2017), the President of the Athens Jewish Community Minos Moissis stressed that Panoussis’ statement “affects me both as a Jew and as a Greek. As a Jew, because once again the mass murder of the Holocaust is wiped out when it is compared to unrelated modern themes. As a Greek because he isolates me as a supposedly victim and target of a Europe in which I want to live”. 
* READ THE WHOLE ARTICLE HERE

 
SHIMON PERES' STATE VISIT TO GREECE - An overall review Print E-mail
Thursday, 09 August 2012 07:16
The intensification of contacts between Greece and Israel, with emphasis on the sectors of investments, energy, tourism, shipping, agricultural development, the environment and commerce was agreed on Monday during a meeting between Greek President Karolos Papoulias and visiting Israeli counterpart Shimon Peres, who arrived in Athens on Monday August 6, 2012, on a state visit at the invitation of his Greek counterpart.
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The Greek Participation in the “Diplomatic Seminar for Young Jewish Leaders" for 2012 Print E-mail
Thursday, 20 September 2012 13:09
from Jeffrey Solomon

During the summer of 2012 on July 1st till 12th, the Diplomatic Seminar for Young Jewish Leaders which was organized for the 13th consecutive year by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Israel, took place in Jerusalem. Thanks to the Israeli Embassy in Athens, I was given the chance to have the pleasure and the honor to represent Greece at this Seminar and I experienced close hand, moments that will accompany me forever.

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AJC DELEGATION IN ATHENS Print E-mail
Tuesday, 24 July 2012 06:14
AJC Executive Director David Harris, accompanied by Daniel Schwammenthal the Director of the AJC Transatlantic Institute in Brussels, and Ellisa Sagor, Chief of Staff of the office of the AJC Executive Director, visited Athens on Friday July 20, 2012, following visits in Jerusalem and Baku. David Harris was also accompanied by the President of the Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece David Saltiel and the President of the Athens Jewish Community Benjamin Albalas.  Among the highlights of the AJC program in Athens were meetings with Prime Minister Antonis Samaras; Foreign Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos; Defense Minister Panos Panagiotopoulos; Interior Minister Evripidis Stylianidis; Education Minister Konstantinos Arvanitopoulos; PASOK President Evangelos Venizelos; and Israeli Ambassador Arye Mekel.
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ANNOUNCEMENT FOR THE NEW GOLDEN DAWN MEMBER IN PARLIAMENT Print E-mail
Thursday, 26 July 2012 06:17
The new ‘Golden Dawn’ MP Mr Artemios Mathaiopoulos was sworn in as a member of the Greek Parliament yesterday following the resignation of an MP from the region of Serres. In the past, Mr Mathaiopoulos was a bass player in a hard rock Greek band called “Pogrom”(!); a band with a vast repertoire of fiercely racist, fascist, vulgar and anti-Semitic songs. “Auschwitz”, a song with lyrics like “fuck Anne Frank”, “fuck the tribe of Abraham”, “piss on the Wailing Wall” “Juden raus” and  “Auschwitz, how much I love it”, is characteristic of the band’s ‘work’.
The Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece has protested on behalf of Greek Jewry with letters to the President of the Greek Parliament and to Greek political parties.
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ANNOUNCEMENT FOR THE TERROR ATTACK IN BULGARIA Print E-mail
Thursday, 19 July 2012 12:11
The Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece expresses its repudiation for the latest terror attack against innocent Israeli citizens, which took place yesterday in Bulgaria and resulted in seven dead and dozens of wounded.
This hideous act, following last week’s attempt in Cyprus, reminds the humanity that hatred and fundamentalism feed blind terror which once more struck innocent Israelis, this time tourists visiting a country of the European Union.
The Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece conveys the Greek Jewry’s condolences to the families of the tragic victims and to the people of Israel. It also wishes a speedy recovery to those injured.
Athens, 19 July 2012
 
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