Anti-racism legislation a step closer to EU rulebook, Brussels says

Passing the anti-racism bill in Parliament would bring Greece a step closer to the European Union’s legal framework, a spokesman for EU Home Affairs Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom said in Brussels on Thursday.

Asked by Kathimerini’s Brussels correspondent Nikos Chrysoloras if he expected Greece to do more to strengthen its legal framework against hate and racially-motivated crimes, Michele Cercone said the Commissioner remained concerned about racial and extremist violence in Greece.

“Of course, the law that is currently being discussed by the Greek authorities in order to implement the European framework decision would certainly be an important step toward fighting this phenomenon,” Cercone said.

However, the official said, “it will not be a solution by itself.”

The Commissioner, said Cercone, never intervened specifically on the content or the procedures.

“This is for the Greek authorities to debate… We’ll see what the follow-up will be,” he said.

Greek parties have failed to reach compromise on a proposed anti-racism legislation which would, among others, criminalize Holocaust denial.

Junior coalition partners PASOK and Democratic Left on Thursday tabled a bill on their own while SYRIZA is expected to unveil its own proposal on Monday.