Athens mayor vows to stop another Golden Dawn food handout on Friday

Athens Mayor Giorgos Kaminis looks set for another confrontation with far-right Golden Dawn after he said he would prevent the party handing out free food in Attikis Square, near the city center, on Friday afternoon.

The handout, open only to Greek citizens, is due to take place at 6 p.m. but Kaminis issued a statement saying that Golden Dawn did not have permission from the City of Athens to hold the event, which he said “consciously promotes racism and xenophobia.”

Sources said that Kaminis spoke to Public Order Minister Nikos Dendias about Golden Dawn’s plans and received assurances that the police would not allow the handout to take place.

The mayor prevented Golden Dawn from holding a similar event in Syntagma Square in May and the party was forced to hand out food in front of its headquarters.

On that day, Golden Dawn MP Giorgos Germenis attempted to punch Kaminis and hit a 12-year-old girl instead. Parliament voted earlier this month to lift Germenis’s immunity so he could be charged.

Golden Dawn insisted that its plans for a handout were “100 percent legal” as it had informed authorities and that it would go ahead with the event. The party said that all its MPs and leader, Nikos Michaloliakos, would be at the event.