Parliament lifts immunity for three MPs

Parliament lifts immunity for three MPs

Greek lawmakers on Thursday voted to lift the immunity of three MPs in separate cases previously discussed in the Parliament’s Ethics Committee.

A total of 224 MPs in a total of 225 agreed to lift the immunity of former health minister Andreas Loverdos, as regards the ongoing investigation into the handling of the Novartis case.

Loverdos’ Movement for Change party and ruling New Democracy (ND) backed the proposal. The lawmaker himself said Tuesday he would welcome a probe into what he claims are trumped-up charges that he took bribes from the Swiss pharmaceutical firm.

On Thursday he said he wants to face his accusers and "crush the conspiracy" against him. 

Lawmakers also voted overwhelmingly (219 in favour against 14 against in a total of 233) to abolish the immunity of ND MP Konstantinos Kyranakis, who has been sued by the NGO Greek Helsinki Monitor for allegedly making a racist remark in June, a few weeks before he was elected.

Kyranakis had said that a 2,000-euro benefit the government pledged for parents of babies born in the country would be reserved “for Greek children.”

The president of far-right Elliniki Lysi (Greek Solution), Kyriakos Velopoulos, voted against.

The third vote concerned ND lawmaker Dionysis Hatzidakis over a case that involves his term as mayor of Palio Faliro. One hundred and ninety-four  MPs agreed with the motion, while 18 were against, in a total of 224 lawmakers who voted. 

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