NEWPOST spoke with Mr. G. Koumoutsakos, Member of Parliament B1 for the North Sector of Athens and former Senior Minister of Citizen Protection, Immigration & Asylum. Mr. G. Koumoutsakos, answering a question about the Turkish provocations and Ankara’s incendiary rhetoric, emphasized that “it is not, and should not be, a surprise that Turkey is escalating the tension in Greek-Turkish relations.” Mr. G. Koumoutsakos noted that “since the 70s, Turkey has had the same revisionist strategy of overturning the status quo in the Aegean and the Eastern Mediterranean.” While now, he said “at least two reasons are concurring that aggravate the situation and lead to the continuous escalation of Turkish provocations.” The first, he noted, is the discovery and potential exploitation of significant natural gas deposits in the Eastern Mediterranean in the EEZs of Cyprus, Egypt and Israel. And the second, the upcoming presidential elections in Turkey. The combination of the two has the effect of escalating the tension from Turkey’s side. In this context, Mr. G. Koumoutsakos did not rule out the possibility of further provocation and incident.
To the question of whether Greece has red lines, Mr. G. Koumoutsakos was clear “Of course it does” he replied. He emphasized that he proved it in March 2020 in Evros and in the summer of the same year in the Aegean and he proves it – almost every day – by responding to every violation of the national airspace by the Turkish air force. Mr. G. Koumoutsakos emphasized that “Greece it is a country of stability and dialogue. First and foremost, however, it is a country of sense and national dignity.”
In response to a question about whether the appeal to the International Court of Justice in The Hague is in our country’s interest and whether there is a risk of other claims being made by Turkey, Mr. G. Koumoutsakos noted that “the appeal to The Hague was and is for Greece and its external politics a firm choice of law and peace.” He clarified that “you do not go to the Court either for issues of territorial sovereignty -that is, for the so-called “gray zones” of Turkish fantasies-, nor for issues of national security and defense such as the right to legitimate defense and equipment of our islands. Mr. G. Koumoutsakos stressed that Greece has officially excluded these issues from the jurisdiction of the Court” and emphasized that the only issue to be settled with Turkey is the delimitation of the maritime zones of the Continental Shelf and the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). Mr. G. Koumoutsakos explained that in order to go to court with Turkey, the “referral”, the so-called co-promissory note, must first be agreed upon. And he wondered how this could happen at a time when, under Turkey’s responsibility, there is not even a dialogue and the channels of communication are closed. Mr. G. Koumoutsakos said that “tango needs two”, and noted that “Turkey not only does not want, it has also expelled the orchestra.”
Regarding the serious issue of wiretapping and whether the Greek people should know what exactly happened, Mr. G. Koumoutsakos characteristically stated “No shadows, no pending cases, no obfuscations. Everything in the light. Smooth democratic functioning requires it.” Regarding the resignation of the General Secretary of the Prime Minister, Mr. G. Dimitriadis and the impeachment of the Governor of the EYP, Mr. G. Koumoutsakos noted that the Prime Minister’s reflexes were immediate and substantial, as resignations were requested and the institutional counterweights and institutional guarantees of the state. Mr. G. Koumoutsakos was also placed on the issue of the protection of the inviolability of the private sphere. He emphasized that “In bourgeois liberal democracy the protection of the inviolability of the private sphere is at the core of individual rights, at the heart of Democracy.” Mr. G. Koumoutsakos noted that “in our Republic, it is fundamental to accept that no one is monitored unless there are strictly defined conditions and reasons, criminal or national security reasons, in order to make someone the subject of surveillance.” Regarding the intervention of Costas Karamanlis from Anogeia, Mr. G. Koumoutsakos stated that “there is no one who disagrees with the essence of what he said. After all, what the former Prime Minister said is in line with what the Government is already doing, the complement and reinforce them.”
Asked if the political cost can deprive the ND of its electoral goals, the Member of Parliament of Athens characteristically stated that “the political cost, when it is temporary and superficial, does not affect the strategic electoral goals. Even more so when there are nine whole months of intense government politics ahead. action until the next election.” Mr. G. Koumoutsakos underlined that “this issue should not be left gray and opaque” and went on to say that “only in this way will we not give weapons to our opponents, SYRIZA and PASOK.” Mr. G. Koumoutsakos he emphasized that we should not let the question of wiretapping poison the water table of our political life, because we will constantly find it in front of us.
Mr. G. Koumoutsakos was clear when answering a question about whether a person outside the party leadership (even a technocrat) could become Prime Minister, in a possible joint government, as long as there is no election result that would allow the formation of a single-party government. The Member of Parliament for the Northern Sector of Athens noted that he does not believe in the “transfers” of technocrats to the central front of politics, and emphasized that the electoral popular mandate is the only solid legitimization that if you don’t have it, you never step firmly. Finally, he underlined that “the times require leaderships with solid, heavy walks.”.