Cyprus Mail

Elam and Edek clash over House defence committee

Elam leader Christos Christou

Elam on Tuesday took a swipe at Edek over the socialist party leader’s refusal to convene the House defence committee he is chairing in protest over the far-right party’s participation.

Edek leader Marinos Sizopoulos has sent a letter to House President Annita Demetriou objecting to head of Elam Christos Christou’s participation in the committee because he had not done his compulsory military service.

He cited among other things, that Christou did not serve in the National Guard, by “feigning health issues” but he was a bodyguard of the leader of Greece’s now disbanded neo-Nazi party Golden Dawn, who has since been imprisoned for various crimes.

The party he was working for is considered a criminal organisation, Sizopoulos said, arguing that it disqualified Christou from having access to sensitive information and taking part in decisions.

Elam rejected the move, arguing that Sizopoulos had no authority to do such a thing.

“There are no legal or ethical reasons for the expulsion of a member of parliament from a particular committee, let alone the chairman of a parliamentary party,” Elam said in a statement.

It added that Sizopoulos’ request is pointless and that the Edek leader has no authority to exclude anyone from the House defence committee.

Christou, his party said, has submitted to parliament the medical certificates which led to his exemption from military service.

It is clear, Elam said, that the Edek leader was trying to regain lost ground from the parliamentary elections and the loss of his party’s fourth place to Elam.

Elam is now the fourth biggest party in parliament after garnering 6.78 per cent of votes, slightly higher that Edek’s 6.72 per cent.

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