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Press Release

ADL: Holocaust Denial in Greek Parliament Raises Urgency of New Anti-Racism Legislation

New York, NY, June 7, 2013 … In response to Holocaust denial comments made by a member of the Greek parliament, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) urged the Greek government to resolve differences within its coalition and swiftly pass new anti-racism legislation currently under consideration.

On June 6, Ilias Kasidiaris, a member of parliament from the neo-Nazi party Golden Dawn, in comments made at a parliamentary committee meeting, singled out Greek-Israeli businessman and philanthropist Sabby Mionis referring to him as “The Jew Sabby Mionis” Kasidiaris also confirmed that Mionis’ decision not to appear before the parliamentary committee at a hearing in Greece because there are members of the committee who are Holocaust deniers was based in fact when he said “[Mionis] won’t come to this committee because there are Holocaust deniers on it. And indeed there are Holocaust deniers on it.”

“Mr. Kasidiaris was clearly referring to himself as the Holocaust denier in his hateful rhetoric since he is the only Golden Dawn member of the committee,” said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director.  “We expect Greek leaders to condemn such appalling statements made in parliament.  No Jew anywhere should be compelled to engage with Holocaust deniers and Mr. Mionis’ decision is certainly understandable and we commend him for his stance.” 

In a letter to Prime Minister Antonis Samaras, Mr. Foxman urged the Prime Minster to fulfill his pledge he made in his March 19 speech at the Monastiriotes Synagogue, to enact new and stringent anti-racism legislation.

Kasidiaris has a history of anti-Semitic remarks in the Greek parliament, including the reading of an excerpt in October 2012 from the anti-Semitic document, the Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.

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