ADL Calls on European Non-Discrimination Body to Reconsider Membership Status of Neo-Nazi Party Representative

New York, NY, October, 4, 2012 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today condemned the presence of a representative of the Greek neo-Nazi party Golden Dawn as a new member of the Committee on Equality and Non-Discrimination of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, calling it “an affront to concepts of equality and non-discrimination.”

Golden Dawn party member and parliamentarian Eleni Zaroulia joined the Committee on October 1st.

Golden Dawn party leaders are openly anti-Semitic, racist, have denied the Holocaust, and its members have reportedly targeted dark-skinned individuals in Greece through various violent acts. Its doctrine echoes Nazi principles by proposing that “only men and women of Greek descent and consciousness should have full political rights,” and the party recently held a blood drive to collect blood “only for Hellenes,” i.e. ethnic Greeks. Other members have expressed their abhorrent hatred though music with anti-Semitic and racist sentiments.

“The despicable ideology of Golden Dawn stands in the most stark contrast imaginable to the goals of the Committee on Equality and Non-Discrimination,” said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. “Given the party’s rhetoric, it is an affront to concepts of equality and non-discrimination that one of its representatives now serves as a member on this Committee.”

In a letter to Committee Chairperson Tina Acketoft, ADL urged the Committee to ensure that Golden Dawn’s representative is immediately, clearly and publicly rebuked for any statements that promote Golden Dawn’s neo-Nazi ideology, and that Ms. Zaroulia be prevented from assuming any leadership responsibilities.

“If a procedure is available to remove her from the Committee, such action would demonstrate that commitment to the Committee’s mandate starts at home,” Mr. Foxman wrote. “We urge you to take this step before any further harm is caused by the presence of a Golden Dawn representative on your Committee.”

ADL is the world’s leading anti-hate organization. Founded in 1913 in response to an escalating climate of anti-Semitism and bigotry, its timeless mission is to protect the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment for all. Today, ADL continues to fight all forms of hate with the same vigor and passion. A global leader in exposing extremism, delivering anti-bias education, and fighting hate online, ADL is the first call when acts of anti-Semitism occur. ADL’s ultimate goal is a world in which no group or individual suffers from bias, discrimination or hate.

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