This was never seen before in the Greek parliament. Hardly had speaker Vaggelis Meimarakis invited Nikos Michaloliakos, leader of extreme-right Golden Dawn (Chrysi Avgi) to take the floor, immediately more than 100 MPs stood up. However for very different reasons.
Various Greek MPs abandon Parliament to protest Golden Dawn
Party leaders and 71 MPs from main opposition left-wing SYRIZA and 12 MPs from communist KKE left the Parliament hall in order to show their protest for the extreme-right party having entered the parliament. So did the 17 MPs of Democratic Left, the third partner in Samaras’ coalition government. They left the hall and left party leader Fotis Kouvelis sitting alone…
DEMLEFT leader Fotis Kouvelis -alone as his MPs left the hall
At the same time, the 18 MPs of Golden Dawn stood up to show respect to their leader, while Michaloliakos was walking towards the speakers’ tribune.
Standing Golden Dawn MPs
SYRIZA had said right from the opening of the Parliament after June 17 elections that it would leave the hall eveyrtime somebody from the Golden Dawn would speak.
Video: Parliament speaker – left MPs stand up and leave – GD MPs stand while Michaloliakos walks towards the speakers’ tribune.
The incident took place on Saturday during the debate about Samaras’ government programme.