18 Apr, 2023

Renew Europe calls for safeguarding rule of law in Greece

Two years have passed since the murder of journalist Giorgos Karaivaz. As a champion of media freedom in Europe, Renew Europe has called upon the Greek authorities to resolve the crime as soon as possible and bring the perpetrators to justice, as this unresolved murder casts a heavy shadow on media workers. A Media Freedom Act that will guarantee media pluralism and independence is urgently needed in Europe.

Renew Europe also remains deeply concerned about the overall backsliding on rule of law and fundamental rights in Greece. The government is exercising illiberal practices that have very little to do with European values and principles. That is why Renew Europe MEPs called on the Prime Minister to redress the current state of media freedom, including controversy about wiretappings, corruption, transparency and rule of law issues.

Georgios Kyrtsos MEP (Independent, GR), said:

"Greece remains the only EU member state where a journalist has been assassinated without the authorities being able to find the culprits and where no official information has been given to the public about the progress of the investigation. We cannot let it be - answers are needed. A free and independent media landscape where journalists can abduct their work safely is a central pillar for any healthy democratic society. The Greek authorities must speed up the investigations to resolve the crime and bring the perpetrators to justice."

Sophie in ‘t Veld MEP (D66, NL), Renew Europe coordinator in the European Parliament Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs and leader of a recent mission to Greece on this topic, concluded:

“The shocking situation in Greece follows the standard playbook of rule of law backsliding. The EU’s reaction cannot be too little too late, as it often was in the past. The Parliament should take the lead here as a priority matter. Protection of the rule of law must take precedence over protection of partisan interests. We cannot kick the can down the road when it is about our core values.”

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