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KIS - English Version
EUROPEAN JEWISH CONGRESS CALLS ON GREEK PRIME MINISTER SAMARAS TO SUPPORT ANTI-RACISM LAW Print E-mail
Friday, 31 May 2013 07:34
President of the European Jewish Congress (EJC) Dr. Moshe Kantor has called on Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras to support an anti-racism bill which would outlaw incitement against people because of their race, religion, ethnicity or sexual orientation, and impose jail sentences of up to six years on offenders, according to reports.
“It is imperative that Prime Minister Samaras support this law which would bolster existing legislation against hate and racism,” Kantor said. “With anti-Semitism, racism and xenophobia on the rise in Greece, the law enforcement authorities need tougher tools to curb this growing wave of hate rapidly spreading across the country.”
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RONALD S. LAUDER LAMENTS FAILURE BY GOVERNING PARTIES TO AGREE ON BILL AGAINST HATE SPEECH Print E-mail
Wednesday, 29 May 2013 09:48
The president of the World Jewish Congress (WJC), Ronald S. Lauder, today expressed disappointment with Greece for its continued failure to adopt new legislation to combat hate speech, racism and the denial of the Holocaust. “It is very worrying that the mainstream parties in Athens are apparently unable to find a compromise on this important matter. Hate mongers and extremists such as the leaders of Golden Dawn are not only a threat to minorities such as the Jews; they are a threat to democracy as a whole. Hence, they ought to be fought vigorously by all democratic forces, and with the full force of the law,” Lauder declared.  
On Monday, a meeting of the leaders of the parties that form the Greek government on this issue broke up without an agreement. A draft bill by the Greek Justice Ministry is reportedly being opposed by Prime Minister Antonis Samaras’s New Democracy party, which argues that existing legislation suffices in order to deal with racism and hate speech.
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ANNOUNCEMENT FOR THE TRIAL OF GREEK JEWRY REPRESENTATIVES Print E-mail
Friday, 24 May 2013 11:21
On May 22, 2013, Konstantinos Plevris dropped all charges brought against representatives of Greek Jewry, namely Moses Constantinis, the former President of the Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece (Greek abbreviation: KISE), Benjamin Albalas, President of the Jewish Community of Athens, Abraham Reitan, former Secretary General of KISE, Leon Gavrielidis former Director of KISE, as well as the representatives of the NGO, Greek Helsinki Monitor (GHM), Panayote Dimitras and Andrea Gilbert.
Consequently, the court definitely ended prosecution against the above mentioned individuals on charges of defamation. The same court exonerated the above mentioned representatives of Greek Jewry and the GHM of charges of false accusations.
In a period that racism and anti-Semitism are making their presence felt in Greece, the Central Board of Jewish Communities expresses Greek Jewry’s satisfaction over the fact that its representatives, who defended the dignity of Jews in Greece, serving as witnesses for the prosecution in the trials against Konstantinos Plevris, have finally been cleared of any criminal offence.
 
Athens, May 24, 2013
The Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece
 
RACISM & XENOPHOBIA NOT THE ANSWER TO GREECE'S PROBLEMS, AJC CHIEF SAYS Print E-mail
Friday, 31 May 2013 08:02
Peddling xenophobia, racism and anti-Semitism is not the path to a restored and vibrant Greece,”says David Harris, executive director of the American Jewish Committee (AJC), in an interview with Kathimerini, in which he expresses concern about the growing influence of Golden Dawn, the neofascist party elected to Greek Parliament last summer.
Harris talks about the growing interest of US investors in Greece and stresses that Washington welcomes the ever-closer cooperation between Greece, Israel and Cyprus in the area of energy.
The AJC chief also talks about Washington’s ties with Ankara and US diplomatic efforts to improve ties between Turkey and Israel, which became strained following a 2010 Israeli raid on a Gaza-bound aid flotilla, in which eight Turks and a Turkish-American were killed.
 
How do you feel about the decision by the Greek prime minister to cancel his scheduled participation at the upcoming AJC Global Forum, as he failed to also secure a meeting with US President Barack Obama?
Needless to say, we were very disappointed to receive the news, as we had been most eager to welcome Prime Minister Samaras to the AJC Global Forum. He has been a long-standing and cherished friend of AJC for over two decades, and he would have received a rousing ovation from the audience of over 1,500 attendees. That said, we fully understand the decision he took. This would be his first visit to Washington as the Greek prime minister, and it is obviously important that he also use the occasion to meet President Obama. Due to White House scheduling difficulties, regrettably, that was not possible at the time of this year’s AJC Global Forum. But even if Prime Minister Samaras is unable to join us this time, we are delighted that our good friend Foreign Minister [Dimitris] Avramopoulos will be addressing us in Washington on June 3.
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ANNOUNCEMENT FOR OUTBURST OF ANTISEMITIC SPEECH Print E-mail
Wednesday, 22 May 2013 09:21
Last week, a number of incidents involving anti-Semitic rhetoric caused the reaction of the Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece, which issued  an announcement.
The announcement refers to Golden Dawn MP Christos Papas who admitted admiration of Hitler during a parliament session: Following a verbal exchange between MP Papas and SYRIZA MP Tatsopoulos the latter read an excerpt from an article written in the past by Christos Papas in which he praised Hitler and national socialism. In response MP Papas thanked MP Tatsopoulos for “having reminded from this podium the writings of his youth” and added that “the future of the world belongs to nationalism”.
The second incident refers to anti-Semitic statements made by the President of LAOS party George Karatzaferis. In his TV show entitled “All Greece, just a neighbourhood”, broadcasted by ART channel (owned by Karatzaferis, former Tele Asty), Karatzaferis, inter alia, pointed out that there are no poor Greek Jews while all other Greeks suffer from the economic crisis.
There follows our Board’s announcement:
“The Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece, points out that during the previous week, praisers of Nazism and sworn anti-Semites tried to create an atmosphere of Anti-Semitism and to turn the Greek public opinion against the Jews by launching shameless accusations against them, based on Nazi characterised stereotypes.
When a parliamentary praises Nazism in the Greek Parliament, in the bastion of Democracy, and when a political party’s leader launches unfounded and false accusations against the Jews, then extreme Anti-Semitism spreads its tentacles undisturbed, fomenting the foundations of Democracy itself.
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