Golden Dawn MP Eleni Zaroulia is a member of the Greek parliament delegation to Strasbourg’s Council of Europe’s Committee on Equality and Non-Discrimination (Twitter)
The Council of Europe is considering barring its far-right members who are linked with "neo-Nazi racist and anti-Semitic" parties.
A challenge launched on 21 January may result in scrapping the accreditation to Eleni Zaroulia, deputy from Greece's Golden Dawn party, and Tamas Gaudi Nagy, from the Hungarian Jobbik party.
Zaroulia became member of the Committee on equality and non-discrimination of the Parliamentary assembly of the Council of Europe in October 2012. She sparked a wave of criticism in October after she referred to immigrants as "sub-humans" carrying "all sorts of diseases," during a parliamentary session in Athens.
Italian MP Fiamma Nirenstein slammed both for belonging to political parties who were "racist and anti-Semitic," according to the news site Euractiv.
"Ms Zaroulia has said in her country's Parliament that the immigrants were sub-humans who invaded her homeland and spread diseases," said Nirenstein, as quoted by Reuters. "Mr Gaudi Nagy has told his Parliament that there was a list of Jews representing a threat to national security, and who were exploiting the Holocaust to dominate the world."
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The complaint, supported by at least 10 members of the Council of Europe's Parliamentary Assembly, will be examined by the Committee on rules and procedure. The committee has the power to ratify the MP's credentials or restrict their right of participation in the Assembly.
However, the challenge has not been supported by French Assembly president Jean-Claude Mignon.
"It is not the job of the Assembly to tell the Hungarians or the Greeks 'You voted correctly', or 'You didn't vote correctly," he was quoted as saying.
In 2004, some MPs challenged the entire delegation from the-then Serbia and Montenegro over human rights concerns. But the Assembly said it "cannot but ratify the credentials of the parliamentary delegation of Serbia and Montenegro" in order not to "punish the democratic forces in Serbia and Montenegro represented in its national delegation".
The Council then changed its rules to allow the challenge of individual parliamentarians.
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