NEWS

Deputy prime minister hits out at SYRIZA

Deputy Prime Minister Theodoros Pangalos has launched an all-out attack on the Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA), accusing the leftist part of instigating an attack on him and 11 other PASOK MPs.

The war of words broke out on Thursday after Pangalos?s dinner with the lawmakers at a taverna in Kalyvia, southeast of Athens, was interrupted by a group of about 50 protestors from nearby Keratea, where locals have been protesting since December the government?s plans to build a waste processing center.

Pangalos alleges that the protestors verbally abused him and his guests, threw pots of yogurt and a chair and refused offers to discuss their grievances. He also claims that stones were thrown at the PASOK MPs? cars.

?The systematic and organized placing of SYRIZA on a path to lawlessness and the terrorizing of supporters of the government leads to reactions that are difficult to predict,? said Pangalos in a statement in which he described the leftist party?s leader, Alexis Tsipras, as a ?living room revolutionary.?

The deputy prime minister also accused former Keratea mayor Stavros Iatrou, who has played a leading role in the Keratea protests, of being a SYRIZA member.

Iatrou denied any affiliation to the leftist party and said he played no part in the protest against Pangalos.

SYRIZA responded to the deputy premier?s statement by describing it as a ?far-right rant? and accusing Pangalos of being intentionally ?provocative?.

The leftists said that he could not accept the fact that the public has turned against him and is looking to make SYRIZA a scapegoat.