Wait for German court goes on

The top German court that has put the brakes on the extradition of former Siemens CEO Michalis Christoforakos will not take any further decisions before the end of next week, sources told Kathimerini yesterday, as the doubt over the fate of the bribery suspect continues to cause uncertainty on the political scene as well. Sources said that the Federal Constitutional Court, which on Monday surprised Greek authorities by saying that it wanted to examine further Christoforakos’s appeal against his extradition, is not likely to reach a decision before next Thursday as some judges are still on holiday and the case file has to be looked at in some detail. However, Christoforakos’s bid to remain in Germany was dealt a blow yesterday when the Munich appeals court that ruled last week he should return to Greece to stand trial rejected an appeal against the decision from his lawyers. The wait for Christoforakos’s future to be decided is also playing havoc with Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis’s planning ahead of his keynote speech at the Thessaloniki International Fair during the first weekend of September. Sources said yesterday that Karamanlis has yet to decide whether to call snap elections and when he should reshuffle his Cabinet. The decision of Germany’s Federal Constitutional Court could yet have an impact on Karamanlis’s thinking before he visits Thessaloniki. In the meantime, the government continues to slam PASOK over its decision to contact Christoforakos’s legal team to ask for any documents the suspect has that back up allegations that he bribed Socialist officials to help secure state contracts for Siemens Hellas. «PASOK should itself answer some very basic questions before it starts posing questions to others,» said Development Minister Costis Hatzidakis. Meanwhile, the Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) was yesterday trying to limit the damage done by one of its own MPs, Pericles Korovesis, who suggested that leftists had also accepted under-the-table payments when they were part of a coalition government in 1989. SYRIZA asked Korovesis to retract his comments or to resign.