With immigrant-bashing plaguing Greece, two Greek immigrants to Germany – where many have fled looking for jobs – have become victims too, suffering a beating at the hands of Neo-Nazis in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia.
The Greek Proto Thema newspaper reported the incident, citing eyewitnesses. The two men, 35 and 51, were selling newspapers on the streets when they were surrounded by a gang demanding to see their permission papers, then beat them when they could not produce any, the newspaper said.
A few days earlier, nearly 1,000 police officers raided clubhouses and apartments of known neo-Nazis in western Germany after a ban was placed on three violent far-right groups in the country’s most populous state. Ralf Jaeger, interior minister of the state, announced the ban as part of an intensified crackdown on neo-Nazis in the industrial state.
Police searched 146 premises, confiscating weapons, computer hard drives and election posters of the far-right National Democratic Party (NPD) which blames immigrants for crime and unemployment. Its supporters, similar to the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn group in Greece that won 18 seats and has been tied to beatings of immigrants, are said to be concentrated among under-educated and unemployed young men.
Deutsche Welle reported that last December, state authorities in North-Rhine Westphalia set up a new unit in Dusseldorf to police far-right players after shocking disclosures that a secretive neo-Nazi cell based in the eastern state of Thuringia had murdered 10 people — eight of Turkish origin, one person of Greek origin, and a policewoman — between 2000 and 2007.