The persecution of the Athens Review of Books at the European Parliament again
New question to the Commission from MEPs Miltiades Kyrkos and Maria Spyraki
Protection of freedom of press in Greece
The Greek ex-Foreign Minister filed a lawsuit for libel against the magazine “Athens Review of Books” asking 250,000 euros. N. Kotzias, a long time senior member and close associate of the Secretary General of the Communist Party of Greece, author of an ideological book in collaboration with prominent members of the regime of East Germany and Yaruzelski's propagandist claimed that he was offended because a reader’s letter characterized him as “Gauleiter of Stalinism”. The judges vindicated Minister N. Kotzias. Then Mr. Kotzias turned against the magazine for the obvious reason that it exercised political critique and from July 2017 onwards he obtained a freezing order against the publisher’s bank accounts and the magazine's revenues from the press distribution agency.
- Does the Commission consider that the political leadership’s criminalization of political expression is in line with the freedom of the press?
- What is the Commission's position on the ability that Greek law affords to politicians to systematically claim compensation from the press, asking for excessive sums in compensation?
- Does the Commission consider the possibility that this and other similar cases have the goal of intimidating the press and especially when they are accompanied by court decisions that are subsequently condemned by the ECHR?
Miltiadis Kyrkos Maria Spyraki