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Politics

Hardalias Rejects Claims That He Gave Hoopsters COVID Pass

ATHENS – The Athens Prosecutor’s Office is looking into allegations from the newspaper Efimerida ton Syntakton newspaper that Deputy Civil Protection Minister Nikos Hardalias allowed entry to the Turkish basketball team Fenerbahce for a Euroleague game despite some possible COVID-19 symptoms.

That was said to have happened in October, 2020 when the Coronavirus was raging ahead of another lockdown but Hardalias said the claims were false and demanded the paper produce proof and said he would sue, said Kathimerini.

Hardalias said in an announcement that neither he nor any of his colleagues at the Civil Protection Agency had knowledge that four members of the Turkish team were allowed into the country even though they had possible symptoms.

He said the team arrived on a special charter flight that underwent required scrutiny for entry into Greece, in accordance with Euroleague and FIBA protocols except for a temperature check with is usually the first requirement.

He stressed that the Civil Protection Agency was only involved to allow the flight from Turkey during a travel ban without explaining why nor why the players temperatures weren't taken.

The flap led the major opposition SYRIZA to demand he be fired but that was ignored by the New Democracy government.

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