Greek Parliament president blasts Varoufakis over Eurogroup recordings
Γιάνης Βαρουφάκης (Copyright: Eurokinissi/Γιάννης Παναγόπουλος)

Greek Parliament president blasts Varoufakis over Eurogroup recordings

Tassoulas returned the package to him, irate, and told him to "assume his own responsibilities"

President of Parliament Constantine Tassoulas rebuked MeRA25 leader Yanis Varoufakis on Friday for handing over to him in an envelope the conversations he had secretly recorded while attending a Eurogroup discussion in Brussels as finance minister in 2015 and asking him to "use them as he sees fit."

The incident happened in Parliament during a discussion on the government's labor policies and after Varoufakis had addressed Parliament. During his comments on wages, Varoufakis mentioned that he was depositing the Eurogroup recordings with the president of the body before leaving, and read a Supreme Court decision which he said found the recordings legal, as they were made while carrying out his duties as minister.

Tassoulas returned the package to him, irate, and told him to "assume his own responsibilities" and not turn the president of parliament "into a bearer of his responsibilities."

As the Parliament president said, "Shortly before leaving for the funeral of his best friend, as he told us, Mr. Varoufakis left a confidential, as he said, envelope for the president of Parliament through MeRA25's parliamentary group president. He assumed, in a speech delivered before he left for the funeral of his best friend, as he said, that the contents of this envelope relates to his secret recording of proceedings of top-level collective bodies of the European Union and thus apparently gave me the right, as he said, before leaving for the funeral of his best friend, the right to decide if I will pass it on to party leaders."

Tassoulas continues, "I wanted to say that when someone feels the urge to assume an initiative - to announce secret recordings he has made - he must personally assume the responsibility of implementing this initiative. I do not see myself or Parliament here as a porter or bearer of Mr. Varoufakis' responsibilities. Therefore I am immediately summoning a staff member and returning Mr. Varoufakis' letter as unacceptable. Parliament is not going to turn into a bearer of any responsibility Mr. Varoufakis may personally wish to assume by revealing such secret recordings."

Criticizing the MeRA25 leader, Movement for Change (KINAL) said that if the party leader wants to publicize the recordings, he has to do it on his own. In any case, it said, "we would like to remind that KINAL has requested the setting up of an investigative committee on everything that happened in the economy."

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