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The coup, which wasn't carried out last year ...

30 September 2012 / 12:09:53  GRReporter
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Sunday's "To Vima" newspaper is revealing plans to destabilize the republic and the organization of a military coup d’état, relating them to the release of the Office of the commanders of the land, air and naval forces in November last year, shortly before Prime Minister George Papandreou was forced to resign. The report does not make direct accusations at anyone, but the then commander of the general staff of the Greek army Frangoulis Frangos is indicated as the central figure, by attributing to him critical views against the political class, which is torn by economic scandals and parallel to this is continually retreating from the protection of national interests. His relations with the then Defence Minister Panos Beglitis are characterized by "extreme distrust" and Frangos himself, along with naval and air force commanders, supports more or less nationalistic and patriotic ideals. Sources close to Panos Beglitis, are attributed the phrase "We had to get deeper in the hierarchy to find militaries who believe in a republic without chevrons."

The reportage notes that General Frangos maintains excellent relations with President Karolos Papoulias, with bishop Antimos, but also with Liana Kannelli, and unites individuals from the so-called "Patriot Wing" of almost all parties. It is stressed that the General himself, in private conversations, has characterized the rumours that he had planned a coup d’état, or that he is an extreme rightist, as ridiculous and offensive.

The then leadership of the Ministry of Defence noted the events which, according to them, prove the upcoming destabilization - as for example the episodes against Panos Beglitis on 26 October in Thessaloniki, organized by far-right groups and apostate organizations, which have maintained constant telephone contacts with officers of the armed forces - from the reserves and still employed. The cancellation of the military parade in Thessaloniki after the invasion of hundreds of people on Alexandros Avenue and the catcalls to the President were also assigned to these events.

It is also pointed out that a few days before 28 October a reserve officer had sounded out the opinion of a politician from the national-patriotic right wing about the possible participation in a transitional military government.

The publications about a possible coup were denied by both Minister of National Defence Panos Panagiotopoulos and former Director of the National Intelligence Service Konstantinos Bikas. The Minister of Defence said that the Greek armed forces have always performed their constitutional duty to defend the national independence of the republic, and everything else is unrealistic. Konstantinos Bikas, in turn, said that he had never informed Prime Minister George Papandreou about a possible coup d’état. He stressed that the National Intelligence Service had never received information requiring recourse to actions provided by law to protect the republic.

The publications were also denied by the office of former Prime Minister George Papandreou. It is stressed that last year's events in the armed forces had taken place under the rule of law, ensuring the fighting capacity of the army within its mission, as provided in the Constitution, while keeping the transparency and the choice of the most worthy. It was stated that information about a possible coup had never reached Prime Minister George Papandreou, and that such information was published in European media in November 2011, but had been disproved.

Tags: military coup George Papandreou Frangos Frangoulis Army
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