Two members of the Ukrainian nationalist Azov Regiment of Greek origin addressed the Greek Parliament along with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. This caused a political scandal.
Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis invited the Ukrainian leader to address the Greek Parliament on March 25, Greek Independence Day. The head of government himself, Greek President Katerina Sakellaropoulou, the Ukrainian ambassador to Athens, and members of the Cabinet of Ministers came to listen to Zelensky.
In addition to members of the ruling party, the speech was attended by the leader of the SYRIZA-Progressive Alliance, Alexis Tsipras, and the representative of the MERA25 party, Yorgos Logiadis. Deputies of the right-wing Greek Solution Party and the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) boycotted meeting.
During a very pathetic speech Volodymyr Zelensky with a speech full of references to Greek history, he stressed that he would fight to the last Ukrainian. In addition, the head of state invited the Greek parliamentarians to watch a video with the appeal of two fighters in Mariupol.
The first speaker said that he was born in Mariupol, his grandfather “during World War II fought against the Nazis.” And now he himself is fighting as part of the Azov battalion. The second fighter of Azov performed in a mask. He asked Greece to send humanitarian aid to Mariupol.
In total, Zelensky’s speech lasted 15 minutes. At the end of it, Olga Gerovasili, secretary of the SYRIZA-Progressive Alliance party, noted that it was unacceptable to invite members of the Azov Regiment to speak. She stressed that at the meeting of party leaders she would ask the Speaker of Parliament Tasoulas for an explanation as to whether he was informed about this and whether he gave his consent to it.
The Communist Party of Greece sharply criticized the speech of Azov members in parliament.
“Shame! Only this word can describe the current presence, through a teleconference, of the President of Ukraine in the Greek Parliament,” says the publications Radio 902.gr.
“V. Zelensky’s speech turned into a vicious show of money laundering by the reactionary government of Ukraine, in order to sanctify Euro-Atlantic propaganda, portraying even the Nazis as “freedom fighters”.
The masks literally fell off, irreparably exposing the government and other parties involved in this tasteless prank, when, after the Ukrainian president, an “expatriate” who “participates in the defense” of Mariupol through the Nazi “Order of Azov” spoke up“, – emphasized the Greek communists.
The Greek communists, from the very beginning of hostilities in Ukraine, chose anti-war stancedeclaring this war imperialist and blaming the authorities of Ukraine, the USA, NATO and Russia for it.
Greek Communist Party leader D. Koutsoumbas, speaking at a rally on April 4, declared:
“And even the fact that Putin wants to restore the Soviet Union, as if today’s capitalist, nationalist, reactionary Russia has something in common with a workers’ multinational state in which dozens of peoples and nations lived peacefully for decades. (…)
They can’t fool anyone! And if today they support the Ukrainian government and invite the President of Ukraine to speak in parliament, it is not because they are hurt for the people of Ukraine, but because they are on the same course with the US-NATO camp.EUwhich supports the Zelensky government.
As if they don’t know that Zelensky’s reactionary government, like Russia, is responsible for the suffering of the people of Ukraine.
As if they do not know that this government all these years supported and promoted the integration of Nazi organizations into the state apparatus. It persecutes and imprisons communists, it outlaws the Communist Party of Ukraine.(…)”.