Italy and Greece go after free speech: authorities prosecute dissidents

The Greek police, now ready to kick your door in if you want to publish an uncomfortable fact (Photo by Milos Bicanski/Getty Images)


A few months ago Brussels Signal warned that the freedom of speech and expression in the European Union would be endangered by the European Parliament’s resolution on hate speech. Two recent incidents, one in Italy and one in Greece, prove our concerns were justified.

Crucially the EU’s criteria of what constitutes a hate speech “eurocrime” are vague. Whereas in the past hate speech had to do with incitement to violent actions, now it relates to insulting somebody’s “human dignity.”

In practice, this entails a potential crackdown on any “dissident” who refuses to accept an agenda of demographic substitution, Islamic invasion or LGBTQ frenzy. Even without such a legal framework in place, the threat is clear.

Last month, two people, one in Italy and one in Greece, were apprehended and prosecuted for opposing illegal immigration and for organising a protest against a scheduled Pride parade.

In Italy Antonio Mastantuono, the creator and administrator of X account Radio Genoa had his home raided by the Carabinieri. His PC, iPad and phone sim card were confiscated, his google account and X profile were shut down and he was accused of inciting hatred on X and on a Telegram channel – which ended up not being his.

Radio Genoa is an X account that mostly posts videos of criminal activities by illegal immigrants. Because of its powerful material it has become popular worldwide. Elon Musk himself reinstated the account a few days ago.

“I have only published real videos with factual descriptions,” said Mastantuono in a statement. “The reality is that they are trying to silence me because I speak uncomfortable truths that go against the dominant narrative. However, free speech is my right, and I will continue to exercise it.”

In Greece Nektarios Mikkios, a soft spoken 34 year-old Christian activist from Macedonia, was recently arrested and brought to justice for calling for a peaceful protest against the Europride LGBTQ events which took place last weekend in Thessaloniki.

Mikkios spoke on FocusFM last Thursday, inviting people who feel offended by public nudity and sexual acts to gather outside a church so as to express their opposition to the Europride. He made it clear that the non-violent demonstration would downright reject any insults toward the LGBTQ community.

However, a few hours later police stormed his apartment, ramming his door, arresting him and charging him with violating laws regarding “insubordination” and “hate speech.” Mikkios spent the weekend in jail and was brought to court on Monday.

Both Italy and Greece have centre-right governments. And while EPP bigwig Greek Prime Minister Mitsotakis is known to be a pro-immigration progressive, as well as Green Deal and LGBTQ cult enthusiast,  Meloni’s Italy proves that it still has a long way to go in asserting true freedom of expression for everyone.

European ruling elites are tightening their grip on power, becoming increasingly autocratic and authoritarian. In many cases, people are no longer allowed to share facts or voice their disapproval of their governments’ agendas.

Still, there is a bright spot. On both Mastantuono’s and Mikkios’s cases ordinary people, journalists and politicians mobilised to support them. Legal help was provided and costs were covered through crowdfunding and donations.

In this uphill struggle against a despotic establishment, solidarity is the only way.