Government Rejects SYRIZA-Progressive Alliance Proposal on Voting by Mail for Greeks Living Abroad

Kasselakis, Stefanos Kasselakis

The government has chosen not to discuss the proposal by SYRIZA-Progressive Alliance on voting by mail for all Greeks living in Greece and for establishing five global regions for those permanently residing abroad, according to SYRIZA-PA leader Stefanos Kasselakis on social media on Tuesday.

Instead, the main opposition leader charged that the government chose to table an amendment, through Interior Minister Niki Kerameus, that includes "two discriminations," as Kasselakis charged. "The first is against Greeks abroad because if you are a Greek abroad or a diaspora Greek, you cannot run in your own region [abroad]. The second discrimination relates to Greeks living within Greece. It is unacceptable to use online lists for every Greek to be able to vote in Greece during euroelections, wherever he or she lives, but not apply it to national elections."

Kasselakis was referring to a bill that was tabled in July 2023 and again on Tuesday, in which Greeks voting abroad would be able to vote in their region of residence, one of four: Europe, North, Central, and South America, Oceania-Far East, and Rest of countries. Each of these areas would elect one of four state deputies in total to represent Greeks living permanently abroad.

The main opposition party stated in statements after tabling it again on Tuesday that the proposal would implement the recently amended article 54, paragraph 4 of the Greek constitution, "so that Greeks abroad would vote for their own representative, as the representatives themselves on the Council of Diaspora Greeks and the National Commission for Human Rights have consistently requested."

In his post on the same day criticizing the government for being "neither consistent nor adequate," Kasselakis continued, "This is SYRIZA's proposal. New Democracy does not accept it. If they truly want to come talk with us in a spirit of consent, we are here. The question is, do they want to?"

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