Greek Political Debate Turns into Live TV Slap Fight

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A spokesman for Greece's ultra-conservative Golden Dawn party is wanted for arrest after attacking two women politicians during a televised debate. Former member of Parliament Ilias Kasidiaris grew enraged during the live program, stood up and threw water in the face of SYRIZA's parlimentary candidate Rena Dourou. When Communist Party hopeful Liana Kanelli stood up to challenge him, he began slapping her in the head before others stepped in to separate them. 

Here's video of the incident, via Business Insider.

The program went of the air shortly after the fight began, but the scuffle reportedly continued afteward. Perhaps Kasidiaris was agaitated over a pending court case where he's been accused of driving the getaway car during the armed robbery of a college student 2007. His trial starts Monday and it appears that Dourou's mention of the case is what set him off.

The far-right Golden Dawn, which is usually characterized as a neo-Nazi party, has taken advantage of Greece's chaotic economic and political situation to make major inroads in the Greek government, gaining 7 percent of the vote during the last election on May 6. Kasidiaris became a member of Parliament in that vote, but the House was disbanded after the leading parties were unable to form a coalition government. A new election will be held on June 17, a vote that many consider to be a referendum on Greece's future in the eurozone. If parties opposed to the European bailout take control of the country, that could be the first step toward the country defaulting on its debt and abandoning the shared currency once and for all.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.