A member of the Mariupol-based neo-Nazi Azov Battalion, who claimed to be Greek and identified himself as Mikhail, caused controversy as he spoke in the Greek Parliament.
His full speech, with an English dub, can be heard.
— Derek Gatopoulos (@dgatopoulos) April 7, 2022
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky gave his video address in the presence of President of the Hellenic Republic Katerina Sakellaropoulou, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, main opposition SYRIZA-Progressive Alliance leader Alexis Tsipras, the head of the opposition Movement for Change (KINAL) parliamentary group Michalis Katrinis and MeRA25 representative Giorgos Logiadis.
The parliamentary groups of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE), MeRA25 and the right-wing Elliniki Lysi were absent.
Following the message from the Azov Battalion member, government spokesman Giannis Oikonomou said: “Including a message from an Azov Battalion member was wrong and inappropriate”.
The appearance of the neo-Nazi fighter prompted SYRIZA MP’s Nikos Filis, Thodoris Dritsas and Yiannis Giolas to walk out of the session.
“The speech by members of the neo-Nazi Azov Battalion in the Greek Parliament is a challenge. They spoke of a history day, but it’s a historic shame. Solidarity with the Ukrainian people is a given. But the Nazi cannot have a say in parliament,” said SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras.
Leader of MeRA25, Yanis Varoufakis, said on Twitter: “Zelenski CHOSE to stand next to a neonazi during his video-talk to our Parliament. He must be condemned on two grounds: 1. Normalising Nazism 2. Supporting Putin’s claim that Ukrainian resistance = nazism.”
Fair enough. But Zelenski CHOSE to stand next to a neonazi during his video-talk to our Parliament. He must be condemned on two grounds: 1. Normalising Nazism 2. Supporting Putin's claim that Ukrainian resistance = nazism https://t.co/mQauPCgNdb
— Yanis Varoufakis (@yanisvaroufakis) April 7, 2022