Journalist Thomas Jacobi, correspondent La Croix, attacked in Athens

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During the demonstration against the new name of the neighboring country, Northern Macedonia, our correspondent Thomas Jacobi was attacked violently by members of the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn Party on Sunday afternoon, January 20 in Athens.

Other journalists were also abused and twenty-five police officers were injured in confrontations with hooded youth.

"We should have put on our helmets and masks of protection," the journalist Angélique Kourounis, stationed in Athens, is sad. On Sunday, January 20, a demonstration brought together 60,000 to 100,000 people who were hostile to an agreement that allowed the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia to be named "Macedonia of the North". The rally was organized at the request of the "Macedonian Fighting Committee for Greece", while the Greek Parliament is expected to vote on 24 January.

The new name North Macedonia divides the Greeks

Despite the family nature of the demonstration, which brought together people from all over the country – 326 buses were chartered according to police accounts – the mobilization quickly took a violent turn. The neo-Nazi Party Golden Dawn had called for participation in the demonstration, along with representatives of the right-wing New Democracy opposition, although the latter had not given any instructions.

"The incidents were provoked by extremists, members of Golden Dawn, who tried to enter Parliament" the government communicated. Scuffles took place between young people with a hood who waved sticks and sticks and with the police. Twenty-five police officers were injured. The extremists also attacked journalists, photographers and cameramen.

Aggravated because of his documentary about Golden Dawn

Thomas Jacobi, the correspondent of La Croix in Athens, was assaulted by several Golden Dawn supporters in the afternoon: "In the mist of tear gas, I wanted to approach the handles to take photos & video's, when a member of the party turned to me and threatened me: you're the one who made the film? # 39 ;. " It called the documentary "Golden Dawn, a personal issue", directed in 2016 by Thomas Jacobi and Angélique Kourounis, selected and awarded several times.

Behind the scenes of the Greek neo-Nazi Golden Dawn Festival

"They threw themselves at me and hit me, tried to tear off my phone and forced me to erase all the videos from the demonstration, and I still have a sound recording of my attack for 3 minutes and a half before recording my tape recorder stops, I could not have imagined that I would ask for help one day.

His attackers suddenly disappeared when they saw police officers. Thomas Jacobi left the hospital Monday after a night in observation. He is finally lucky when he thinks about hitting various other victims of Golden Dawn commands.

Marie Verdier