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Greek parliament approves proposal to ban far-right party from elections

Greece’s parliament voted Tuesday to prevent the extreme right Greeks-National Party from running in general elections on May 21, local media reported.

The ruling central-right New Democracy and center-left opposition PASOK parties voted yes, while the main opposition SYRIZA party abstained, said the state-run AMNA news agency.

Speaking in parliament, SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras accused the government of institutional amateurism.

“In the end, you manage to become the best sponsors of the Kasidiaris party (Greeks-National Party). You give arguments to those who file a combination to appeal for the annulment of elections to the electoral court and the supreme court of human rights. Imagine the boost it will give to the extreme right if a decision comes out that vindicates them,” he said.

He was referring to Ilias Kasidiaris, a leading member of the now defunct Golden Dawn party, who is serving prison time for various offences but still managed to set up the Greeks-National Party.

Speaking on behalf of the government, Interior Minister Makis Voridis blamed SYRIZA for turning a blind eye to fascism.

“You would be exposed if you don’t join us to pass the bill,” he said.

The populist-nationalist Greek Solution party and former Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis’ leftist MeRA25 party voted against the proposal.

Also opposing the proposal, the Greek Communist Party (KKE) argued that the new bill risks opening a window for the exclusion of other political parties from elections in the future.


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