The Greek Culture Ministry has condemned the destruction of a statue at a public square on Athens’s southern coast that religious zealots said symbolized Satan.
“Freedom of expression and creativity are fundamental prerequisites of every democracy. Public dialogue, peaceful disagreement and the dialectical relationship between opposites are fundamental pillars of the Greek civilization and have been bequeathed to all humanity,” the ministry said in a statement on Friday, while pledging to protect the free movement of ideas.
“Darkness is not a color. It is the end of all colors,” it added.
Phylax, which in Greek means “guardian,” a red winged figure by Kostis Georgiou sat atop an 8-meter metal pole, was pulled down from its pedestal in Palaio Faliro in the early hours of Thursday by around 15 hooded men, according to an announcement from the municipal authority.