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Φωτο: Konstantinos Tsakalidis / SOOC

Government will not consider the political cost of essential reforms

Among those reforms, according to government spokeperson, Mr Marinakis, are postal voting, allowing private, non-profit universities to be founded in Greece, as well as changes in justice and health, among others.

The government will push through essential reforms without considering their political cost but only what benefits the citizens, government spokesperson Pavlos Marinakis said on Wednesday in an interview with Open television about the legislation planned in 2024.

"What we expect and what has been announced...is a series of very important changes ... that were sometimes taboo. Important reforms for the country were frozen for many years," Marinakis said.

Among such he listed postal voting, allowing private, non-profit universities to be founded in Greece, as well as changes in justice and health, among others.

Asked about the bill on gay marriage, the spokesperson said the government will listen to all views with great respect and noted that the prime minister has announced that relevant legislation will be passed within the current four-year term.

Regarding the planned reforms in justice, he said that the effort will be directed toward limiting the number of times cases in the courts can be postponed and speeding up court decisions, while also toughening up the penal code, perhaps replacing suspended sentences with community service or re-examining the amount of time actually served for serious crimes.

The spokesperson also referred to the jailing of Fredi Beleri and the Albanian authorities refusal to permit him to be sworn in as mayor of Himare, in line with the results of local elections. He stressed that the government's stance had not changed and that Beleri's rights must be respected, both as regards the election result and as regards the presumption of his innocence. He said that action in Albania to remove the mayor who lost the elections was welcomed but did not change the fact that the mayor who had actually been elected was not being sworn in.

"Overall, the accession course of a country depends on respecting the rule of law and human rights," he added, stressing the Greece's prime minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, and the Greek government would not accept anything less than full respect of human rights and the rule of law and noting that the Greek position "has become a European position."

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