The head of the Pan-Pontian Federation of Greece has not been allowed to enter Turkey where he was scheduled to attend a special service at the Sumela Monastery in Trabzon on Saturday, the body said in a statement on social media.
Giorgos Varythymiadis was detained in the transit area of Istanbul’s international airport where Turkish authorities initially intended to deport him. Other members of the group Varythimiadis was travelling with, including the president of the Athens Journalists’ Union (ESIEA), Maria Antoniadou, were allowed to continue on their journey, the federation said.
However, Kathimerini understands that Varythymiadis will be released around 7 or 8 p.m. to continue his journey, after a diplomatic intervention. Athens issued a verbal and later on a written démarche to Ankara, protesting the “abusive detention and deportation order” against him.