Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Zizek has caused controversy in Greece by suggesting that he would send anyone who does not support SYRIZA to a “gulag”.
Zizek met with SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras in Croatia last week when the pair were taking part in the Subversive Festival. Tsipras also met US director Oliver Stone there.
During a panel discussion with Tsipras, Zizek expressed his appreciation for SYRIZA. The academic had appeared alongside Tsipras in Athens ahead of last summer’s national elections as well.
“SYRIZA is one of the bright lights in Europe today,” Zizek told the audience in Zagreb.
However, it was his comments regarding those who do not support SYRIZA that attracted criticism in Greece on Monday, when the video drew attention on social media.
“If they don’t support SYRIZA then, in my vision of the democratic future, all these people will get from me a first class one-way ticket to [a] gulag,” he said.
New Democracy issued a statement saying Zizek's comments were "bloodcurdling and repulsive". The conservatives called on Tsipras to explain why he did not react to the philosopher's comments. The party added that "thousands of people of Greek origins were killed in Gulags."
SYRIZA responded by slamming ND for taking the comments seriously.
"It seems that stupidity and absurdity has no limits at New Democracy," the leftist party said.