An anti-immigration protest in the northern Greek Port town of Patras turned violent as protesters clashed with police. The protest was staged in response to the murder of a local man by three illegal Afghan immigrants this weekend.
An angry mob comprised of members of the far-right Golden Dawn and local residents rallied outside a disused textile factory where hundreds of illegal immigrants stay, in the Ities neighborhood of Patras. They were protesting against immigrants following the murder of a 30-year-old local man,Thanasis Lazanas, allegedly by three Afghan illegals.
The protest turned violent and police used tear gas against the protesters. Europe online reported the protesters responded with Molotov cocktails and broken bottles.
Ekathimerini reported the victim was stabbed to death near his home following an altercation between the man's dog and the Afghans. Police have so far arrested one of the three men suspected of murder and are searching for the other two. All three were teenagers who had been arrested one month earlier for entering the country illegally and had been given a deadline to leave Greece. Phantis reported the arrested 17-year-old Afghan has confessed to the murder.
Patras has long been a magnet for illegal immigrants hoping to sneak onto ferries bound for Italy. Thousands of undocumented migrants live in makeshift conditions close to the port and railway.
Golden Dawn, whose members were involved in the Patras riot, entered Parliament for the first time in May when they gathered seven percent of the vote. Figures released from polling stations indicate that between 45 to 65 percent of police voted for the far-right extremist party which campaigned on an anti-immigration platform.