Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis on Sunday directly referred to what he termed as political exploitation, on the part of the opposition, of the deadly Tempi rail disaster, speaking just days after his government survived a no-confidence vote in Parliament.
He spoke during his regular weekly briefing on the government’s work, which is aired on Sundays.
The no-confidence motion was tabled in Parliament by four opposition parties two days after an explosive front-page report in last Sunday’s “To Vima” cited the tampering of audio tapes of recordings between railway traffic directors and train conductors on the fateful evening of Feb. 28, 2023.
In an unusually harsh statement for such weekly reviews, he said that “no, we’re not celebrating their failure to topple the government by stepping on the pain and anger of victims’ families. No one can be pleased from this toxicity and polarization; we’ve paid dearly for this in the recent past. The opposition’s main purpose isn’t to prevent such deadly accidents from happening again.”
He also again repeated that his government has confidence in the independent justice system and its decisions.
“Let me say this again: There was no attempt at a cover-up… we are all judged by the citizens.”
Beyond the unprecedented rail tragedy that struck the country, Mitsotakis also cited the latest minimum monthly salary hike, which will take effect on Monday.
“This is the fourth increase in the minimum (monthly) wage since 2022, which now rises to 830 euros (gross) an increase of 28%,” he said. He also referred to the ratification criminal code revisions that moved along the line of stricter jail terms and pre-trial remand, such as extending the maximum prison sentence to 25 years from the current 20.