We are a religious destination, said the Mayor
The municipality of Meteora in central Greece declined the pass-through of ‘Little Amal’, a giant puppet-doll that is walking through 70 cities in Europe in support of refugees. The walk-through of the puppet was planned to take place at Meteora on 29/8, but the local council blocked the event turning down the relevant permits to 17 ‘NO” votes against 5 “YES” votes, citing Covid-19 public safety concerns.
Amal is a 3.5-meter doll, depicting a young refugee girl, created by the distinguished Handspring Puppet Company. Representing all the displaced children in the world, many of whom live far from their families, ‘Little Amal’ will travel more than 8,000 km, carrying the urgent message “Do not forget us”.
The “most serious” reason, as mentioned during the board meeting, for taking this decision was the pandemic, as according to the municipality of Meteora it would be a source of transmission of the coronavirus. However, the biggest objection that seemed to emerge during the meetings was the “origin” of Amal and the “real intentions” of the organisers of the project.
Those “voices” reacted to the whole event, speaking of a “Muslim doll” and an “Islamic dummy” that more or less functioned as a “bait” of NGOs with ulterior motives.
The mayor of Meteora, Theodoros Alekos, who, despite the reactions, repeated his initial position expressed at the municipal council on Monday.
Specifically, Mr. Alekos stated: “I was worried when I learned from the local media about the arrival of Amal because a model of a Muslim daughter is coming to our area. For religious reasons, because we are an area where Meteora is located, the monastic state, our city and municipality are a religious destination, we are opposed to the arrival of this particular Muslim doll.”