Judges say rumors aimed at pressuring them

Judges say rumors aimed at pressuring them

The Council of State’s general assembly issued a statement on Friday saying that recent public revelations concerning the private life of a high-ranking court official were aimed at exerting pressure on judges who are scheduled to decide on several high-profile issues in the next few weeks.

“The recent publications, in light of their content and particularly their timing, create reasonable suspicion that they are not aimed at informing the public but at undermining the judiciary’s morale and influencing the course of justice,” the statement by the members of the country’s highest administrative court said.

The statement in particular concerns aspersions cast against one of the vice presidents of the court who was to sit in a plenary session on Monday and Wednesday that was to discuss appeals submitted by six television channels challenging the constitutional legitimacy of a recent broadcasting license tender held by the government.

The official, however, may not be able to attend as a probe has been ordered by Justice Minister Nikos Paraskevopoulos into media allegations relating to his private life.

Two of the country’s biggest unions of judges had expressed similar concerns regarding both the publications and the minister’s probe earlier in the week.

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