Former government spokesman Marios Pelekanos has been included on Elam’s party list for June’s European elections.

The party said Pelekanos “responded to Elam’s call for a joint effort to address the challenges facing Cypriot Hellenism.”

They added, “the purpose of his inclusion is to promote the interests of Cyprus in Europe, through the participation of our party in the pan-European party the Party of European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR).”

The ECR is a hard right pan-European alliance, of which other members from other countries include Kyriakos Velopoulos’ Greek Solution party, Spanish national conservatives Vox, and the United Kingdom’s Conservative Party.

Speaking following the announcement, Pelekanos said “my incorporation into Elam is based on my long-standing positions on issues of utmost importance for every Greek Cypriot, such as immigration, demographics, and the promotion of economic policies for the benefit of vulnerable groups in the population.”

Pelekanos served as government spokesman under former President Nicos Anastasiades between 2021 and 2023, and subsequently became vice chairman of Anastasiades’ party Disy.

However, he resigned as party vice chairman in February after not being selected by Disy as a candidate for the European elections.

Rumours had been rife in recent weeks that he may be included on Elam’s party list instead, with Elam leader Christos Christou confirming on Wednesday that discussions to that end have been held.

Speaking to the Cyprus Mail on Friday, an Elam spokesman said a final decision has not yet been made regarding the party’s choice of candidates.

However, he said, “we have a sure direction and a short list of people between whom we are deciding. We are in the final stages of this process and we expect to finalise it very soon.”

“This decision could be made today and could be announced within a couple of hours, or it may take a few days. In any case, we are close to being able to announce it.”

Pushed on the possibility of Pelekanos being on the list, the spokesman said, “I cannot comment on individual potential candidates at this stage as I don’t want to act unfairly towards the others.”

Disy MP Onoufrios Koulla made it clear on Friday that Pelekanos’ time as a Disy party member would come to an abrupt end were he to be included on Elam’s party list.

Speaking to Politis radio, he said “if he is included, there is nothing to discuss.

“Whichever member of the party appears on the ballot of another party, whether that be for town councillor, for mukhtar, for parliament, for the European parliament, or for anything else, they are automatically expelled from the party.”

Despite Koulla’s categorical description of what will happen should Pelekanos appear on Elam’s ballot, there could have still a way back for him in the party before that happens, even at the eleventh hour.

Disy leader Annita Demetriou has reportedly telephoned him within the last 24 hours, though the nature and content of that call remains as yet unknown. Pelekanos sent Demetriou an email on Friday afternoon asking to have his membership of the party terminated.

Pelekanos historically found himself socially on the right of Disy, with his views on matters such as immigration and LGBT rights having been described as “sensitive”.

He has previously described himself as a member of the “popular right”, a more traditionally conservative wing of Disy which many consider to be an important part of the party’s base.