The neo-Nazi Golden Dawn party’s ongoing blood drives with donations earmarked only for Greeks pitted it against protesters outside a hospital in Tripoli in which a man who was photographing the event said he was attacked by the extremists.
Tensions rose on April 27 at the Panarkadiko Hospital of Tripoli, Peloponnese, when Golden Dawners ordered the cameraman to delete video footage recorded on his mobile phone, arguing that their faces should not be identifiable.
Labour unionists of PAME – the trade union affiliated with the Communist party KKE – had gathered outside the hospital protesting Golden Dawn and holding banners that read “Golden Dawn is the bosses’ sidekick and the system protects them.”
Golden Dawn had said it would be donating blood to Greeks only, sparking a backlash from medical practitioners who asked the Health Ministry to prevent it. The party’s secretary in Tripoli, Nikolaos Skantzos, said that this was the second time they were donating blood and said that the hospital was no place for a political controversy although he didn’t explain why the party’s restrictive policies were not political.
The head of the PESY trade union in the Peloponnese said in a statement that, thanks to the protesters’ intervention, Golden Dawn members were forced to donate blood in the same way that any other citizen would and the blood collection bags would not be specially labeled to be given to Greeks only.