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Orthodoxy, law and order - the slogan of Antonis Samaras’ social policy

26 April 2012 / 19:04:30  GRReporter
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Anastasia Balezdrova

Some days after New Democracy leader Antonis Samaras had presented his vision for the Greek economy, he has also announced the social policy direction. It can fit in the slogan "religion, law and order" and its purpose is to inspire confidence in "masters" as he called that part of the electorate.

He again requested support in the elections to enable him to form his own cabinet and implement his election promises. The main ones were abolition of university asylum in practice, intensifying the fight against illegal immigration, extradition of illegal immigrants, fighting crime and strengthening the sense of security in citizens.

Antonis Samaras’ speech made it clear that he is against the separation of the Church and the state. After praising the contribution of the Church, he said the state would not stop paying the salaries of the clergy. The New Democracy leader added that under his administration, the state would contribute to the use of church property" as planned and we will do the same with state property." "Whatever changes we make, they will not be against the Church," he said.

Antonis Samaras said that Orthodoxy is an integral part of Greece’s national identity and a part of its cultural and historical heritage. "Those who are constantly attacking the Church must read and reread Article 3 of the Constitution. These mean attacks must stop. The state does not interfere in church matters. The Church does not intervene in politics," he said emphatically.

The blue leader said his party has managed to break the "ideological terrorism of the Left." He accused PASOK and the Left wing of condemning as "right-wing and conservative" all attempts to correct social inequalities. 'They called bad and far right everyone who dared utter something about the elimination of university asylum or about taking measures on illegal immigration." According to Antonis Samaras, "there are no left and right needs. Crime affects everyone, not just the supporters of the Right wing." He declared himself against the rioters, who destroy and burn during protests and vowed to bring down their hoods. Water tanks would be used during demonstrations to repel those more enthusiastic and extinguish any fires immediately, at the same time. "We know that many universities are actually the places where such groups gather and that the websites that support terrorists are on university servers. After 7 May, this will change and universities will be able to finally relax."

The New Democracy leader accused the Minister of Citizen Protection Michalis Chrysochoidis of serving electoral interests by taking actions against illegal immigrants. He promised that after the elections he would change the law on granting Greek citizenship voted by the government of PASOK. "Right now, it is like a magnet for illegal immigrants who are still coming in hundreds. From the beginning of the year alone, 12 thousand people have crossed the Evros border." Antonis Samaras promised to change the way in which Greece will deal with the problem. The relevant steps include stricter border controls with the support of European forces, extradition of illegal immigrants, construction of reception centres where illegal immigrants will stay no longer than four months before they return to their countries. Fighting illegal trade is also a priority, "because it is a means of profit for them." He also announced stricter administrative and criminal measures against property owners, who rent them to people without documents and said that the extradition would somewhat free the crowded Greek prisons.

"The European Union is not only threatened by the collapse of the euro, but by the disintegration of the Schengen area," he said and called for Europe to make Turkey understand that by helping the immigrants in their attempts to come to Greece, it is creating problems not only to it, but to the entire continent.

Antonis Samaras drew attention to petty crime in the face of dozens of drug addicts living in the city centre. "Decriminalizing is not a solution. It is healing and reintegration of these people in society."

"Of course, all this cannot happen with a weak police force," said the leader of the blue and added that the special tables for staff members of the security forces should be reintroduced. He said the difference could be offset by reducing other costs, without specifying them.

He announced his support of a reform in the justice system and in particular, for the full and final consideration of cases from all court levels within two years. He also proposed triple legal fees in order to hamper all those bringing any case to court. However, there will be more cases of disputes settled out of court. According to him, bad justice has a negative impact and leads to loss of investment in the country.

Antonis Samaras promised that if his party wins the election, all those involved in the government of Greece after 1974 would be subject to an inspection. "The data will be examined by a judicial team, not by parliament. We will terminate all special privileges. Police officers will be able to fine drivers of limousines just as they do any ordinary citizen."

Education did not escape his notice either. He supported a more "Greek" type of education and explained that changes will take place in the education system, citing the constitution. "It requires that education aims at the moral and spiritual education of the Greeks and the development of national and religious consciousness. Are today's textbooks doing this or perhaps they are trying to rewrite our history in a different way?"

Tags: PoliticsNew DemocracyAntonis SamarasIllegal immigrationSecuritySocial policyConstitutional reform
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