“The ‘Resign’ movement is a cause that does not address the needs of Greek society and which is hostile towards the country at this time,” government spokeswoman Olga Gerovasili said on Tuesday, commenting on a series of protest rallies scheduled for Wednesday, calling on the leftist-led administration to step down.
Speaking on state TV, Gerovasili said “everyone is free to protest as they see fit.” However, she added, “those trying to say they are apolitical when, in fact, this is not the case, will be judged.”
The spokeswoman went on to suggest that efforts have been made by the movement to cover up its affiliation with officials from specific political parties and particularly opposition New Democracy.
“The organizers are trying to hide by saying that no [politicians] are involved and this is all a spontaneous thing,” she said.
The “Resign” movement, organized through Facebook and other social media under the hashtag #paraititheite (“resign”), has sparked controversy, with Education Minister Nikos Filis suggesting last week that the planned demonstrations are “on the verge of constitutional legality.”
Though the government has dismissed Filis’s comments, the Education Minister on Monday insisted that the demonstrations are an attempt at “character assassination” against the prime minister and his ministers.
Labor Ministry Secretary General Andreas Nefeloudis also weighed in, commenting on Facebook that “if you were to turn half these guys upside down, half the country’s debt would fall out of their pockets.”
New Democracy has denied any involvement in the movement. On Monday, the conservative party spokesman Giorgos Koumoutsakos said, “every person, as a citizen, should do as they feel and believe,” adding that “the party has no problem with a few of ND’s lawmakers appearing at the rally.”