ATHENS – Reforms in Greece’s National Intelligence Service (EYP) after its former head was ousted in a wiretapping and spyware scandal still keep power in the hands of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, the major rival SYRIZA complained.
Mitsotakis promised an overhaul of EYP after revelations that the cell phone of PASOK Socialist leader Nikos Androulakis was bugged and an attempt made to place Predator spyware on it.
That led to former EYP chief Panagiotis Kontoleon, who also reportedly admitted to a parliamentary committee that the agency had tapped the phone of journalist Thanasis Koukakis, stepping down for not telling Mitsotakis about it.
Mitsotakis also forced out his former General-Secretary – his nephew Dimitris Grigoriadis. The Premier said while the tapping was legal it was wrong and that if he had been told about it he wouldn’t have allowed it.
SYRIZA was unsatisfied with changes it said “maintains EYP’s non-transparency regime,” as it did not require parliamentary approval and that its chief will still report directly to Mitsotakis, noted Kathimerini.
Following a request by SYRIZA, the Parliament is set to come back early on Aug. 22 to debate the phone-tapping of politicians and journalists and Androulakis said he wants an investigation after going to the country’s highest court seeking answers.