ATHENS – The chief of the Greek Police (ELAS) Lieutenant General Aristides Andrikopoulos could face disciplinary action after opening attending a rally of the ruling Radical Left SYRIZA two days before the party lost big in elections for Greek municipalities and the European Parliament.
Andrikopoulos was seen at the event in the capital city’s main Syntagma Square talking with SYRIZA Secretary Panos Skourletis, Minister of State Alekos Flambouraris and other government officials. ELAS General Inspector for Southern Greece Christos Dragatakis was also seen standing beside Andrikopoulos.
Andrikopoulos was promoted from the role of deputy in August, 2018 after the deadly wildfires north of Athens the previous month killed 102 people amid charges the government’s response was chaotic and confused, including by the police.
“This is the first time that we have seen a police chief expressing his support for a political party so openly and publicly,” sources in ELAS told Kathimerini, stressing that his appearance at the rally where he seemed to back the government is a disciplinary offense that could lead to his dismissal from the force.
According to legislation from 2008, high-ranking members of the police force are prohibited from expressing or exhibiting a preference for any political party and the Minister for Citizens’ Protection is responsible for ordering an investigation into any such incidents, but that would mean a SYRIZA minister would have to order a probe of the police officials for attending a SYRIZA event. Dragatakis may also face disciplinary action as well.