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Who Are ‘the Spartans’, Greece’s New Ultra Right Wing Party?

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The Spartans party logo boasts of being “the strongest nationalist opposition”. Public Domain

The biggest surprise on election night in Greece was the performance of a new ultra-right formation called the Spartans which got 4.64 percent of the vote and gained 12 seats in the new Parliament.

The grouping was catapulted from relative obscurity after support from Ilias Kasiadiaris, the frontman of the now-banned Golden Dawn far-right party. His own party was barred from the elections and he endorsed the Spartans from jail.

The Spartans represent all the ideals and values of Hellenism, said leader Vassilis Stigas in statements on Sunday evening. The 59-year-old was a helicopter engineer and served as an army aviation officer.

Spartans have arrived “to unite, not divide,” he said, adding that “a national party, a national voice will again be in Parliament, after a long time.”

Stigas also thanked Kasiadiaris for his support. “I thank Ilias Kasidiaris for being the fuel that gave us the impetus to reach this result.”

The Spartans consider that the traditions of Hellenism are missing from public life nowadays and describe themselves as “the iron arm and the real bulwark that will stop the decline and the sell-out of Greece and the Greeks.”

Μonday morning, Spartans leader expelled a candidate from Lefkada, who was not elected, for not complied with the party’s “values.”

Dominiki Papadopoulou was active on social media, had participated in a reality show and had also posted private moments on OnlyFans.

Kasidiaris hails Spartans and the ultra-right in Greece

The Golden Dawn strongman hailed the success of the Spartans by posting a photo from outside his cell celebrating and wearing a tee shirt with the logo of the party.

“Today is a day of triumph for the Greeks who have been fighting for the Fatherland and at the same time an unprecedented defeat of the power system. The state failed to ban the original request of hundreds of thousands of Greeks for a strong National opposition. The first step towards the establishment of a strong National faction in the country’s political life has already been taken,” Kasidiaris said.

In October 2020, he was convicted of directing a criminal organization and sentenced to 13 years in prison.

The Spartans are among three fringe parties of the right and one of the left that gained parliamentary representation after Sunday’s elections.

Greek Solution, a nationalist, pro-Russia party formed by former journalist and TV salesman Kyriakos Velopoulos, got 4.47 percent of the vote and will be represented in Parliament with 12 MPs.

Niki, or Victory party which emphasizes Orthodox Christian traditions got 3.71 percent and 10 MPs.

On the left of the political spectrum, the newcomer is Plefsi Eleftherias, or Passage to Freedom, which got 3.17 percent and 8 MPs. Its leader Zoe Konstantopoulou, a leftist firebrand, was the parliament speaker under SYRIZA.

Related: Extreme Right Makes Gains in Greek Elections

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