Greece’s ultra right-wing Golden Dawn party is down to 16 Members of Parliament after ejecting one of its lawmakers, only days after another quit because he said he didn’t know of its “criminal activities” as the government tries to dismantle it.
The party said it was booting Stathis Boukouras, but did not give a reason. If Boukouras refuses to give up his seat, Golden Dawn will be left with 16 seats in the 300-member Parliament.
Boukouras is among several Golden Dawn officials, including the party’s leader, who are in jail pending trial on charges of participating in a criminal organization.
Authorities began a crackdown after last year’s fatal stabbing of an anti-fascist musician by a Golden Dawn supporter in Athens. On March 15, the party lost another MP when Chrysovalantis Alexopoulos quit, citing what he said was its criminal activities. He said he would be standing as an independent.
Golden Dawn’s decision came after Boukouras had suggested he too was thinking of quitting the party, which is currently under criminal investigation with one-third of its MPs, including Boukouras and leader Nikos Michaloliakos, in pre-trial custody.