Prosecutor probes Stasi link to N17

Two official German documents purporting to show that an agent working for the East German secret police, the Stasi, had infiltrated the November 17 terrorist group in the mid-1980s prompted a high-level judicial inquiry yesterday. Appeals Court Chief Prosecutor Athanassios Plomaritis ordered one of the court’s prosecutors, Antonis Mytis, to conduct the probe. Mytis has investigated another Greek terrorist group, Revolutionary Popular Struggle (ELA), and drew up the indictments of four suspected members who are awaiting trial. ELA is known to have had contacts with the Stasi but this is the first time a similar link has been suggested between November 17 and the defunct East German intelligence service. The two documents were revealed by Kathimerini on Sunday. The one dated October 24, 1993 was from the Constitutional Protection Service and addressed to the country’s general prosecutor. It mentioned the testimony of an East German agent who said he had infiltrated November 17 and provided information to the Stasi for a year. The document said «Operation Sun» had been stopped at the prompting of the Russian intelligence agency, the KGB. The informant reportedly said he believed the Russians actively supported N17 and also wanted to protect the identity of «an important Greek businessman» who purportedly funded the group. The other document revealed by Kathimerini, was dated 1987 and was written by a general in East Germany’s security apparatus calling for an immediate end to «Operation Sun» at the request of the KGB. The Greek prosecutor’s probe will focus on the contents of the two German documents, on locating the Stasi agent and in trying to identify the businessman mentioned. He is expected to ask for assistance from the German and Russian authorities. A question raised by Kathimerini’s revelation is whether the prosecutor in charge of the anti-terrorism investigations, Ioannis Diotis, was aware of the German documents. What is certain is that no mention of them was made in the indictments on the basis of which 19 suspected members of N17 are on trial in Korydallos Prison.