More than 2,000 supporters of Greece's extreme-right Golden Dawn (Chrisi Avgi) marched through Athens in a torch-lit rally on Tuesday evening.
Chanting “Foreigners out of Greece!” supporters of Golden Dawn marched through central Athens in a rally which ended peacefully. YNet reported the march was heavily policed.
The controversial party was elected to Parliament with seven percent of the vote in the May 6 elections, but the latest polls show their support has waned in the run-up to the second round of elections on June 17.
Golden Dawn disavows its neo-Nazi tag, proclaiming it a nationalist party opposed to immigration. However, Nikos Michaloliakos, outspoken leader of Golden Dawn, made remarks on national television denying the Holocaust earlier this month, prompting calls from Jewish leaders for the party to be banned.
Reports of the march being heavily policed add a touch of irony to the current political situation in Greece as figures released by RT revealed that approximately half of Greece's police force voted for Golden Dawn in the May elections.
Last week Golden Dawn supporters traveled to Patras in the north-west Peloponnese to participate in violent anti-immigration riots that broke out after three illegal immigrants from Afghanistan were accused of murdering a local Greek man.
The rising tide of violent crime perpetrated by illegal immigrants has attracted supporters to Golden Dawn which offers security to local residents in areas of Athens that are becoming no-go areas due to the infiltration of foreign criminals. Polls indicate that although the party's support has waned they will still attract the necessary three percent of the vote to enter Parliament in June.