Parties row over far right as sell-off fund denies plans to sell WWII, Civil War site

A new row has broken out between the government and SYRIZA after leftist leader Alexis Tsipras repeated his accusations that New Democracy is following far-right Golden Dawn’s agenda as Greece’s privatization agency denied it had plans to sell a site containing an important Second World War and Civil War memorial.

Tsipras spoke on Tuesday night at the Kaisariani firing range in eastern Athens, where he accused New Democracy of representing the values and beliefs of the post-Civil War right in Greece.

“This is an old-style right, straight out of the fifties, that is following the lead of the Golden Dawn fascists,” Tsipras told the audience, who also heard from SYRIZA MP and Second World War hero Manolis Glezos.

The site for his speech was used by the Nazis during the war to murder members of the Greek resistance, including 200 people on May 1 1944, and to execute Communists during the Civil War.

SYRIZA claimed last month that the government has plans to sell the site, which also contains a memorial to those killed, as part of its privatization plan. The Kaisariani firing range was allegedly included in a list of more than 3,000 public properties that would pass to the privatization fund, HRADF.

The fund issued a statement on Tuesday saying that it did not intend to sell the site. It added that there had never been any such plans.

Nevertheless, Tsipras’s speech, which included accusations that New Democracy was trying to “scrub out any historic memory of the resistance,” prompted angry responses from New Democracy and PASOK.

Government spokesman Simos Kedikoglou said Tsipras “should look in the mirror to understand who is driving on Golden Dawn.”

PASOK spokesperson Fofi Gennimata accused Tsipras of causing division at a time that Greeks need to come together.