President calls parties to show ‘spirit of understanding’

President calls parties to show ‘spirit of understanding’

Reacting to a political squabble over a government ban on public gatherings ahead of celebrations to mark the 47th anniversary of the Athens Polytechnic uprising on November 17, President Katerina Sakellaropoulou on Monday urged political parties to show “a spirit of understanding.”

“At this critical time for the country, we must focus on the national interest, on solidarity and on maintaining social cohesion,” Sakellaropoulou said after meeting with a delegation of MPs from left-wing parliamentary parties.

Earlier on Monday, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis called for a more subdued celebration of the anniversary of the bloody 1973 student uprising that helped topple Greece’s then-military junta.

On Sunday, Greek police issued a four-day ban on gatherings of more than three people that will end the day after the commemoration of the Polytechnic uprising. Leftist parties vowed to defy the ban.

The government says the ban aims to protect public health amid a spike in coronavirus infections.

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