Holocaust memorial in Kavala restored after vandalism

tsanaka-mnimeio-evraioi-vandalismos-900x1200A Holocaust memorial in Kavala that suffered an act of vandalism last week, when unknown persons used hammers to smash the marble coating on the memorial, has been meanwhile restored by the municipality of Kavala, local media reported.

Kavalapost.gr also reported that the police are examining CCTV footage of the attack.

The Kavala Holocaust Memorial was dedicated on June 7, 2015 after city officials postponed its original dedication, saying they opposed the Star of David on the memorial.

Greece: Holocaust memorial destroyed in Kavala

tsanaka-mnimeio-evraioi-vandalismos-900x1200

Kavala Mayor Dimitra Tsanaka in front of the destroyed Holocaust memorial, 30/3/2017 via kavalapost.gr

A Holocaust memorial in Kavala, northern Greece, has been partially destroyed in a deliberate act of vandalism, kavalapost.gr reported today. The attack occured only a few days after the desecration with paint of the Holocaust monument in Arta.

The municipality of Kavala has condemned the vandalism promising to fully restore the monument and take the necessary measures to apprehend those responsible.

Though guarded by the police during the night, this is the second vandalism of the newly erected Kavala Holocaust memorial: Just two weeks after the unveiling ceremony on June 7, 2015, the monument was desecrated by a blue paint attack.

Update, 31.03.2017: The Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece has expressed in a statement its “deep concern: these acts of desecration show in an obvious way that anti-Semitism -an antisemitism almost without Jews-, racism, and intolerance survive and lurk everywhere in every moment. Every moral, political or other act of legitimation of the nostalgic pro-Nazis increases the risk of the revival of anti-Semitism and of the expansion of such incidents that threaten the values of a modern and democratic society and darken the prestige of our country. Prosecutors should take all necessary measures to arrest the vandals responsible and bring them to justice.” (full statement here)

Relevant: Vandals smash Holocaust memorial in northern Greece (ekathimerini.com, 30.03.2017)

Greece: Holocaust memorial vandalized in Arta

A few days after the municipality of Arta hosted a ceremony in remembrance of its old Jewish Community, unknown vandals desecrated with paint and the inscription “Yolo” the monument to the Holocaust victims in Arta. The monument is located in front of the Byzantine castle.

The Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece (KIS) on Thursday condemned the antisemitic attack in Arta. An English version of the KIS statement is available here.

The Romaniote Jewish Community of Arta was one of the oldest in Greece. Just before WW II, Arta had about 500 Jews, of whom only 352 lived in the town when the Germans rounded up the members of the community and deported them to the extermination camps. Only 30 survived to return to the town, together with 28 more who had fled and hid in the surrounding villages. (more)

ARTA MNHMEIO(1)

The Arta Holocaust memorial. Source: kis.gr

Attempt to destroy the monument at the Jewish cemetery in Thessaloniki

[English text: CFCA / source: Against Antisemitism blog]

In a post on Facebook, Mr Isaac Alhanati accuses vandals for making an attempt to destroy the monument at the Jewish cemetery in Thessaloniki (located at the Observatory Park of the Thessaloniki University). The photograph we publish with the permission of Mr. Alhanati shows severe damage caused to the menorah on the monument. The memorial has been vandalized in December 2014 – just weeks after the inauguration ceremony – with the slogan “Free Palestine”.

holocaust_memorial_thessaloniki_2016

Photo courtesy of Isaac Alhanati, Thessaloniki, November 2016

The monument in memory of the old Jewish cemetery of Thessaloniki was unveiled on Sunday, November 9, 2014:

mnhmeio_apth_nov_2014

Source: kis.gr

Hate crimes in Greece in 2015 – the OSCE / ODIHR report

2015hcdata2 [via hatecrime.osce.org]

Greece regularly reports hate crime data to ODIHR. Greece’s Criminal Code contains a general penalty-enhancement provision for hate crimes. The Ministry of Justice, Transparency and Human Rights, the Public Prosecutor’s Office and the State Security headquarters of the Greek Police collect hate crime data.

[…]

The Greek Helsinki Monitor and the Racist Violence Reporting Network (RVRN) reported a physical assault and two incidents of vandalism targeting Jewish cemeteries. The Greek Helsinki Monitor, the RVRN, the Kantor Center and the European Centre for Democracy Development reported two additional incidents of vandalism in which Holocaust memorials were vandalized with graffiti, one of which was also reported by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL). The Kantor Center reported two additional incidents of graffiti.

Read more

Find the full data for 2015 here.

Also relevant:

Ioannina Synagogue Vandalized with Swastikas

KIS ANNOUNCEMENT FOR SWASTIKAS GRAFFITI ON THE SYNAGOGUE OF IOANNINA

On September 12, 2016, the exterior of the Synagogue of Ioannina was found by local Jewish Community members desecrated with swastikas graffiti. The authorities were notified. The Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece issued the following announcement:

Vandal racists defaced with swastikas the exterior of the surrounding wall of the historic Synagogue of Ioannina, situated in the old walled city, the Kastro (Castle). Vandals drew swastikas also in some houses of the surrounding area.

The Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece expressed the Greek Jewry’s repudiation for this hideous act and urged the competent authorities to work for the arrest of the perpetrators as well as for the adequate protection of the Synagogue so as to contain such incidents that stain the image of the city of Ioannina.

Athens, September 12, 2016

Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece

Source: kis.gr

img_0151

Photo courtesy of Alekos Raptis, Ioannina 12/09/2016

 

img_0153

Photo courtesy of Alekos Raptis, Ioannina 12/09/2016

Athens Holocaust Memorial again desecrated

The Holocaust Memorial in Athens has been recently desecrated, according to Huffingtonpost.gr. The article claims that the perpetrators daubed the letters “ΡβΚΟ”, which is possibly the Slovenian word “PEKO” meaning “baking”. It also claims that the police have CCTV video of the site and are “looking for the perpetrators.” The desecration was discovered between June 9 and 10.

Back in June 2014, vandals desecrated with antisemitic and threatening graffiti the Holocaust Memorial in Athens. The graffiti included a purported quote from the Talmud saying that Jews who convert should be put to death. Some months later, in October 2014, the Holocaust Monument has been vandalized for the second time within 2014 by the Greek Nazi organisation “Unaligned Meander Nationalists”.

Neo-Nazis deface again Greece’s third-largest city with Nazi graffiti

Neo-Nazis from AME (Unaligned Meander Nationalists) have sprayed Nazi graffiti in Greece’s third-largest city, Patras, and then boasted of their vandalism on their website. This is nothing new: Back in February 2016, they posed in Patras again executing Nazi salutes alongside newly-painted neo-Nazi graffiti. The said group has claimed responsibility for the vandalism of numerous Jewish monuments and cemeteries.

NGO Greek Helsinki Monitor has already filed a complaint against AME and Combat 18 (another Greek Nazi group) for previous racist and antisemitic acts. XYZ Contagion blog has also reported that the Greek authorities announced in November 2015 that they were conducting a preliminary investigation about the vandalism of the Athens Jewish Cemetery by Combat 18. 

“To some people, Jewish Greeks do not exist, except perhaps in Thessaloniki”

Via cafebabel.co.uk

“Fighting to simply exist: Young, Greek and Jewish.” By Joseph Pearson

[…]

As we move away from the Acropolis, the tavernas and souvenir stalls become less frequent. Here, the city placed its Star of David-shaped Holocaust memorial, only inaugurated in 2011. “Finally,” Dimi laments. Athens was the last EU capital to formally commemorate the Holocaust, which killed an estimated 87% of the country’s Jews.

[…]

Athens became the hub for Greece’s Jews, who relocated after the war to try to rebuild their lives. However, Dimi says, people often don’t know this: “To some people, Jewish Greeks do not exist, except perhaps in Thessaloniki.” Some young Greeks I spoke to were surprised to hear that Athens had a synagogue – even Google Maps couldn’t find it.

The community is subject to strict security measures – a necessary step due to the risk of antisemitism. Not long ago, the memorial was vandalised with a slogan promoting Golden Dawn, the extreme far-right party known for its racist, xenophobic views.

Read more

  • The author refers to the desecration of the Athens Holocaust Monument in October 2014.