“Unfortunately, our meeting today was overshadowed by very sad news,” Mikis Theodorakis is now passing into eternity,” Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said on Thursday during a cabinet meeting.
Theodorakis composed perhaps the most recognisable Greek music internationally, the syrtaki from the film “Zorba the Greek” (1964).
Dying the age of 96, during his life he also became known for raising global awareness of Greece’s plight during the 1967-74 military dictatorship.
“His voice was silenced and with his the whole of Hellenism was silenced,” Mitsotakis said.
“As was written about Palamas, ‘we had all forgotten that he is mortal’. However, he leaves us a legacy of his songs, his political action, but also his national contribution at critical moments,” the Greek Prime Minister continued.
“All Greeks are crying today.
“And for this reason, and with a decision of the government, a three-day national mourning is declared from today.
“As you know, I had the honour of knowing him for many years and relatively recently I visited him.
“His advice has always been valuable to me, especially that concerning the unity of our people and overcoming the dividing lines.
“I believe that the best way to honour this global Greek will be for us, in our daily work, to put exactly this message into practice. Mikis is our History and we must continue it as he would like,” Mitsotakis concluded.