Controversial Greek Defense Minister Panos Kammenos Visits New York

By on April 3, 2015
Photo: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese

The controversial Greek Defense Minister and right-wing partner of the Syriza-controled government in Greece, Panos Kammenos, was in New York City representing the Greek government and making rounds— which included marching in the Greek Independence Day Parade down Fifth Avenue and meeting with Archbishop Demetrios at the Archdiocese Headquarters in Manhattan.

Kammenos was criticized and ridiculed throughout Europe when he threatened to release a wave of jihadists to European countries if Greece didn’t get debt relief.

“If they deal a blow to Greece, then they should know the the migrants will get papers to go to Berlin,” he said.

“If Europe leaves us in the crisis, we will flood it with migrants, and it will be even worse for Berlin if in that wave of millions of economic migrants there will be some jihadists of the Islamic State too.”

“If they strike us, we will strike them. We will give to migrants from everywhere the documents they need to travel in the Schengen area, so that the human wave could go straight to Berlin,” he said.

Kammenos defected from the centre-right New Democracy party in February 2012 to set up Independent Greeks and has courted controversy before.

In December last year, Kammenos was criticized after he said that Jews, Muslims and Buddhists enjoyed tax reliefs in Greece whereas the Orthodox Church was made to pay— a misleading statement since Greece’s Orthodox Church enjoys full tax-free status.

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