“We should not forget that nothing can be taken for granted and that the defense of Democracy and its institutions is a constant challenge for us all,” President of the Hellenic Republic Katerina Sakellaropoulou stated in her message on the 53rd anniversary of the April 21, 1967 military coup d’etat in Greece.
She also underscored that this becomes even more imperative in times of global crisis and uncertainty, such as the present coronavirus crisis.
Sakellaropoulou said that we live at a time when, even within the framework of the European Union, some are seeking to play on people’s sense of nationhood.
These ”are targeting democratic rights and freedoms under the guise of protecting citizens,” the Greek President stated.
Sakellaropoulou pointed out the need for Greeks to remember the black pages of their history, as well as their successes, and to learn from the mistakes that led to them, so as not to repeat them.
She also noted the need for consensus and unity between the people and leadership to ensure, finally and irrevocably, that those seeking to undermine the country’s democratic institutions will always remain on the margins of history.
On April 21 Greece remembers the day when Democracy ceased to exist to the very place of its birth, when a handful of far-right army colonels overthrew the democratically-elected government and imposed a cruel dictatorship, which lasted for seven years, and led to the betrayal of Cyprus and the Turkish invasion of 1974.