Greece’s parliament has reopened with a religious blessing and the return of three far-right MPs arrested amid anger over the murder of a musician.
Accused of belonging to a criminal group, the trio from the Golden Dawn party took their seats, having been freed pending trial. The party leader and two other MPs remain in custody.
“We have a criminal organisation,” said Dora Bakoyannis, an MP from the conservative New Democracy party which leads the ruling coalition. “What we are going after is the criminal acts of Golden Dawn. Unfortunately, there are many, so now justice has to finish with the whole investigation.”
“The problem is not deciding if they are a gang or not,” said Greek Communist MP Liana Kanelli, who made headlines worldwide when she was slapped by a member of Golden Dawn on a television programme. “The problem is now to convince people that they have never been, they are not, and they will never be the solution of any of the popular problems.”
Anti-fascist protests in Greece have highlighted public anger after the left-wing rapper’s killing in Athens last month. A Golden Dawn supporter has allegedly confessed to stabbing him to death. The party denies any role but has been widely blamed for a spate of attacks on migrants.
It was reported on Monday that the Greek parliament has been asked to lift the immunity from prosecution of three more Golden Dawn MPs so that they, too, can face charges of involvement in a criminal organisation.