Thousands of Muslim immigrants gathered for outdoor prayer services across Athens on Tuesday to mark the festival of Eid-al-Adha.
Dozens of riot police were deployed in the city centre to protect the immigrants from attacks by extreme right-wing demonstrators who tried to disrupt the prayers.
Reports said a handful of protesters threw eggs at the group of faithful in central Athens before police intervened early on Tuesday.
While the Muslims prayed, some locals shouted obscenities from their balconies and waved Greek flags. Leaflets that depicted pigs — an animal Muslims consider unclean — were scattered across the square.
(Photo: Muslim immigrants pray near a leaflet thrown by extremists to insult their religion, during Eid al-Adha celebrations in central Athens November 16, 2010/Yannis Behrakis)
“There is a (unofficial) mosque near here but we’re afraid to go there,” said a 30-year old migrant from Bangladesh, who gave his name as Shamasul. “Sometimes Greeks in the neighborhood threaten to kill us.”