x

Politics

Greek Governing Party Suspends Euro MP Pending Investigation

December 16, 2022

ATHENS — Greece’s governing center-right New Democracy party has suspended one of its European Parliament members from the party, pending the outcome of an investigation by European authorities into the payment of an assistant.

New Democracy said in an announcement Friday that the suspension was ordered by party leader and prime minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis. It said that while the suspension is in place, Maria Spyraki will not be a parliamentary candidate for the party in the next general elections, which are to be held in the first half of next year.

On Thursday, the European Public Prosecutor’s Office requested the lifting of immunity of Spyraki, as well as one of the European Parliament’s former vice presidents, Greece’s Eva Kaili.

“Based on an investigative report received from the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF), there is a suspicion of fraud detrimental to the EU budget, in relation to the management of the parliamentary allowance, and in particular concerning the remuneration of Accredited Parliamentary Assistants,” the prosecutor’s office said in a statement.

Kaili, of Greece’s socialist PASOK party, is one of four people charged in Belgium with corruption, participation in a criminal group and money laundering in a corruption scandal in which Qatar is suspected of having tried to buy political influence with cash and gifts. She has been arrested and is in custody pending a Dec. 22 hearing in Brussels.

Her partner Francesco Giorgi, who is a parliamentary adviser, has also been arrested and charged. European lawmakers terminated Kaili’s term in office this week.

The investigation against Spyraki is not related to the Qatar scandal.

In a statement to Greek media Thursday, Spyraki said she was “happy to accept” the request for her immunity to be lifted “in order to make clear that I don’t have a single euro difference with the European Parliament.”

She said the issue concerned the allowance of a former colleague who had faced serious personal issues and had been absent from some European Parliament meetings.

“I have nothing to do with Qatargate, I have nothing to do with any other case,” she said.

 

RELATED

ATHENS - A memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the electric grid networks of Greece and Egypt, known as the Greece-Africa Power Interconnector (GAP), was signed in Athens by Houston-based McDermott International and Athens-based Eunice Energy Group.

Top Stories

Columnists

A pregnant woman was driving in the HOV lane near Dallas.

General News

FALMOUTH, MA – The police in Falmouth have identified the victim in an accident involving a car plunging into the ocean on February 20, NBC10 Boston reported.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.

Video

Police: 10 Wounded in Drive-by Shooting in Central Florida

LAKELAND, Fla. (AP) — Ten people were injured during a drive-by shooting in a central Florida neighborhood, police said.

THESSALONIKI – Video Art Miden collaborates with ToPikap in Thessaloniki, presenting the video art program ‘Frozen’, curated by Gioula and Olga Papadopoulou, on Saturday, February 4.

SAN FRANCISCO – The opening of Uproot, the Greek Chamber Music Project (GCMP) concert tour marking the centennial of the Asia Minor Catastrophe, takes place on Friday, February 3, 8 PM, at Old First Concert, 1751 Sacramento Street in San Francisco, and live-streamed online.

MILAN — Italy's government has increased security around its diplomatic missions around the globe in response to “a crescendo of terroristic attacks” by an anarchist network that has been acting in solidarity with an imprisoned Italian militant, the foreign minister said Tuesday.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. [email protected]

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.