Greek President Papoulias says he must protect country from neofascist ‘storm’

Greek President Karolos Papoulias said on Monday that he feels a duty to protect his countrymen from the threat of fascism, just as he did during the Second World War, when he took part in the resistance movement.

“It is my highest duty as President of the Republic to defend democracy and the Greek people from the storm that is approaching,” Papoulias told SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras during a meeting between the two men that focussed on the threat of Golden Dawn.

Tsipras implied that part of the political system had flirted with Golden Dawn and was now pretending to be surprised by its violent behaviour.

“I think it is time for the state, through its democratic institutions, to deal with this phenomenon decisively,” said Tsipras. “It has the tools to do it, the legal framework. It just needs the will.”