A member of the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn party who said Greece is in a civil war – then denied his own comments although they were own a video – has now come out and said that a leading player for Greece’s national basketball team, Sofoklis Schortsianitis, is not Greek because his mother is African.
Ilias Panagiotaros, who is a Member of Parliament for Golden Dawn, which preaches an anti-immigrant, anti-gay, anti-Semitic, anti-bailout platform, said because Schortsianitis’ mother is from Cameroon, he is not really Greek although his father is.
The party believes only 100 percent Greeks with two Greek parents who were the the children of parents who are Greek and can trace their lineage to ancient Greece with only Greek heritage are really Greek.
“We do not believe that Schortsianitis belongs to the European tribe, as his parents are not both from Greece. This is what we believe. If somebody says Schortsianitis is a Greek, then they are allowed to ask him to join their party,” Panagiotaros said.
Schortsianitis starred for the 2006 Greek national team that defeated the United States and finished second in the world and has represented Greece in many international tournaments with distinction. He has been playing in Israel the last two years but is returning to Greece to play for Panathinaikos.
Although witnesses have placed Golden Dawn members at the scene of the beatings of immigrants and three of its 18 Members of Parliament have been stripped of immunity for their alleged participation in assaults on immigrants or other crimes, Panagiotaros denied they have had any role.
“Golden Dawn does not chase immigrants. We just defend the Greek people and Greece. There are not legal immigrants in Greece. They are all illegal,” he said. The party wants anyone who is not 100 percent Greek to be forced to leave the country.