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Politics

PASOK Wants Parliament Probe of Phonetapping, Spyware Scandal

ATHENS – The leader of Greece’s PASOK Socialist party, who said his phone was tapped and an attempt made to put spyware on it, wants Parliament to set up a panel to investigate who was behind it.

Nikos Androulakis, also a Member of the European Parliament, said he believed the National Intelligence Service (EYP) was surveiling him, after reports the agency was also tracking financial reporter Thanasis Koukakis.

The ruling New Democracy party controls Parliament, however, and Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said he was never informed about the phonetapping and his government denied using the Predator spyware found on Koukakis’ phone.

Mitsotakis said while the phonetapping of Androulakis was legal, it was wrong and he never would have allowed it had he known, forcing out the former chief of EYP, Panagiotis Kontoleon and the Premier’s General-Secretary – his nephew Grigoris Dimiatridis, for not telling him about it.

Parliament was called back early on Aug. 22 from a summer recess to take up the cases that have shaken the government ahead of 2023 elections and taking the focus off big tourism and accelerating an economic comeback.

In a letter to House speaker Kostas Tasoulas – from New Democracy –  PASOK said that the surveillance practices “amount to a violation of fundamental principles and institutions of (democracy) as they impinge, to say the least, on the right to free and equal elections, as well as on the principle of party pluralism.”

PASOK, which is Greece’s third-largest party and has seen its popularity double under Androulakis after falling from dominance, sent a request for the Parliament’s Committee on Institutions and Transparency to investigate.

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