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Hate motivated attacks against the Turkish community in Western Thrace addressed in the OSCE 2017 Hate Crime Data - 19.11.2018

The Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) published on 16 November on the International Day for Tolerance the 2017 Hate Crime Data. The hate motivated attacks in 2017 targeting the Turkish community in Western Thrace, Greece are also included in the 2017 data.

The Federation of Western Thrace Turks in Europe (ABTTF) had provided a written contribution during the preparation of OSCE 2017 Hate Crime Data and reported the hate motivated attacks in 2017 against the Turkish community in Western Thrace. Accordingly, the 2017 data refer to the attack in January 2017 on the radio channel Çınar FM belonging to the Turkish community in Western Thrace with headquarters in Komotini and broadcasting in Turkish and the harm given intentionally to the main antenna of the radio by unknown persons, the arson attack by unknown persons in February 2017 on the private vehicle of İlhan Tahsin, owner and chief editor of the newspaper Birlik belonging to the Turkish community in Western Thrace, the attack on Celal Bayar Minority Secondary and High School in March 2017 through harming the doors and windows of the school, dropping sound bomb in the garden of İdadiye Türk Minority Primary School during the class of physical education by unknown persons, pointing as target and threatening directly the executives of the Xanthi Turkish Union (İTB) which is the oldest association of the Turkish community in Western Thrace on some internet pages and social media with their names and photographs given by a racist group who call themselves as “High-Level Patrol Group” and the attack on the branch of the Didymoteicho-Evros Muslims Education and Cultural Association in Feres one day after its inauguration and breaking of the windows of the association by unknown persons in October 2017, and the attack on the Macedonian-Thrace Muslims Education and Culture Association in Thessaloniki through throwing eggs on the windows of the association prior to the Friday prayer in December 2017. Furthermore, the attempted arson attack with Molotov cocktails by a group wearing masks on the Consulate General of Turkey in Thessaloniki in April 2017 is also included in the 2017 data.

The 2017 Hate Crime Data contain official information reported by 39 OSCE participating States as well as information on hate incidents in 47 OSCE participating States, as reported by 124 civil society groups. As per official data reported by Greece, 128 hate crimes were recorded in 2017 by the Greek police, 46 of them were prosecuted and there were 6 sentences.

The 2017 hate crime data related to Greece is available at:

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