Gov’t, New Democracy trade claims over ex-ambassador allegations

Gov’t, New Democracy trade claims over ex-ambassador allegations

The government and New Democracy exchanged allegations on Monday over a letter that Alexis Tsipras allegedly wrote to Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro in March 2013 concerning the country’s ambassador in Athens.

In a report on Sunday, Proto Thema weekly claimed that while he was opposition leader, Tsipras informed Maduro that allegations of sexual harassment had been made against the Venezualan ambassador at the time, Franklin Gonzalez, by embassy employees.

The newspaper quotes an extract of the alleged letter in which Tsipras warns Maduro that he has to act. “Until now, the embassy staff have shown political maturity and will not take steps within Greece that would lead to the problem gaining publicity, which the systemic mainstream media would use to the fullest to damage the left in Greece and Venezuela.”

Gonzalez was never charged with any offenses.

New Democracy accused Tsipras of trying to cover up the alleged scandal.

“He is embarrassing the country, insulting Greek women and trying to turn Greece into Mr Maduro’s Venezuala,” said the conservatives in a statement.

Government sources responded by arguing that there was no cover up, given that Tsipras wrote to Maduro to ask for the ambassador to be replaced. They did not confirm or deny the content of the letter that was published.

They also pointed out that the claims regarding the Venezuelan ambassador had been published at the time and that the Greek Foreign Ministry, then under the control of the coalition led by New Democracy, was aware of them.

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