JOINT PRESS RELEASE: “Homophobic attack by police officers at the centre of Athens”.

Athens, July 31, 2014


“Homophobic attack by police officers at the centre of Athens”.

 The undersigned organizations, that support the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans people, are expressing with this public statement their deep concern and protest against a very serious incident of verbal and physical homophobic violence by police officers against two gay men at the historic center of Athens.

More specifically, as reported in the “Journalists’ Newspaper” [1]:

Last Friday night (07/25/2014) two young men were attacked by Police officers because they were walking hand in hand at the historic centre of Athens. The victims told the newspaper that it was a homophobic incident.

The officers assaulted physically and verbally the two men in a homophobic attack. Their rhetoric goes as follows: “What did you say? Homophobia? Violence against gay people? What is homophobia?”, “you are talking nonsense, these things are not protected by the law”, “how do you know about such issues, are you a lawyer or what”, “you are just boasting telling us how to do our job, we know better now”, “ have everything flattened out”, and “you’ve asked for it”, while later on the officer in charge grabbed one of the two young men by the hand and pushed him against a wall in his attempt to “show” what “raw violence” means.

“We are in a state of shock since that night. We feel totally helpless. We feel like being raped by the very people who are supposed to protect us … “

The incident was reported to Greek Helsinki Monitor, who recorded it on behalf of the Racist Violence Recording Network, while Panayote Demetras – representative of GHM – denounce the negligence of the Greek Police.

We believe that this incident is extremely important as it comes from police officers whose mission is to protect all citizens and not to frighten, terrify and, above all, to exercise racist verbal and physical violence against them. It shows that racism and escalating homophobia, lesbophobia and transphobia have institutionalized characteristics in our country.

We strongly and explicitly condemn arbitrariness, institutionalized homophobic, lesbophobic and transphobic racist violence, and in the meantime declare that lesbians, gays, bisexuals and trans people are well aware of their rights and demand that these rights to be respected and enforced as the rule of law.

We urge the police authorities to:

  • thoroughly investigate the incident, to find the officers that are responsible and punish them.
  • develop information and training courses that are aiming to the protection of LGBT people, as in all countries in the western world, in collaboration with the LGBT organizations of the Civil Society.

Furthermore, we urge the State: a) to revise the Presidential Decree on the Establishment of the Offices against Racial Violence so as to include sexual orientation and gender identity on the grounds of protection and, b) to transpose the EU Directive “for the protection of victim’s rights across the EU” that was voted in September 2012 and includes sexual orientation and gender identity among its grounds of protection.

We declare that we will not leave LGBT people unprotected against acts of discrimination, racism, homophobic, lesbophobic and homophobic violence.


Lesbian and Gay Community of Greece (O.L.K.E.)

Greek Transgender Support Association (G.T.S.A.)

Colour Youth – LGBTQ Youth Community of Athens

Ouranio Tokso Families (Rainbow Families Greece)

Thessaloniki Pride – Thessaloniki Pride Festival

Athens Pride

Lesb.Equal – Lesbians for Equality

Good as You(th) – LGBTIQ Youth Community of Thessaloniki

Homophobia and transphobia in Education

Positive Voice


Homophonia – Thessaloniki Pride

Act Up – ΔΡΑΣΕ Hellas.



~ από Σωματείο Υποστήριξης Διεμφυλικών στο 1 Αυγούστου, 2014.

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