CoE human rights commssioner warns of racial hatred across Europe, including Greece

The Council of Europe’s Commissioner for Human Rights Nils Muiznieks has expressed concern about the worrying rise of race-hate groups across Europe, including in Greece.

“It worries me deeply that the European community and national political leaders appear not to be fully aware of the serious threat that these organisations pose to the rule of law and human rights,” said Muiznieks in an op-ed.

“The philosophy of racist extremist organisations is centred on denying the entitlement of ‘others’ – mainly migrants and members of national, ethnic and religious minorities – to human rights and fundamental freedoms,” he added.

Last month, following a visit to Greece, the commissioner recommended in a report that the government ban far-right Golden Dawn.

Muiznieks made mention of the situation in Greece in his comment piece.

“In Greece, for example, between October 2011 and December 2012 around 220 racist attacks were reported to the Racist Violence Recording Network headed by UNHCR and the National Commission for Human Rights. That is about one attack every other day,” he said. “In my recent report concerning Greece I underlined the need to curb hate crime and combat impunity for hate crimes.”