ATHENS — A heated confrontation erupted in the Greek Parliament between Nikos Androulakis, the president of the Panhellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK), and Makis Voridis, the Minister of State, over changes to the Anti-Terrorism Act and the backdrop of a wiretapping scandal.

PASOK is a major political party in Greece, historically aligned with social-democratic policies. The current government, led by Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, represents the New Democracy party, a center-right political group.

As reported by Greek news website, Androulakis criticized the government and Mitsotakis for what he perceived as a sudden change in the parliamentary agenda concerning the replacement of members of ADAE (the Hellenic Authority for Communication Security and Privacy). This change comes a day before an ADAE meeting, which Androulakis suggests is more than just a coincidence. He highlighted a proposal to fine the National Intelligence Service (EYP) €100,000 for not cooperating with ADAE, particularly concerning the monitoring of his own phone and the reasons behind deeming him a national risk.

In response, Kostas Skrekas, the Minister of Development, and Voridis both emphasized that the term of office for ADAE members had already expired, suggesting that the changes were procedural and expected. Voridis further questioned how Androulakis was privy to the details of the proposed fine, hinting at a potential leak of information.

Michalis Katrinis, PASOK’s parliamentary representative, countered by stressing the suspicious timing of the announcement of the ADAE member replacements, especially given the impending discussion on the proposed EYP fine.

To provide further context, ADAE is an independent authority in Greece responsible for ensuring the privacy and security of electronic communications. The current controversy revolves around the timing of member replacements in this authority, especially when significant decisions, like the proposed fine on EYP, are on the horizon.

Senior parliamentary sources have indicated that the process to replace members of various independent authorities, including ADAE, had been initiated before the recent controversies. The Speaker of the Parliament, Konstantinos Tasoulas, had informed party representatives of these changes a week prior.

The wiretapping issue, combined with the changes in ADAE, has intensified political tensions in Greece, raising questions about transparency, procedural integrity, and the balance of power in the nation’s democratic institutions.


Image source: Thomas Wolf / Wikimedia

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