Following a barrage of negative comments about the Greek PM’s refusal to weigh in on the revelations and the negative publicity surrounding the involvement of Defence Minister Panos Kammenos in the controversial deal of the sale of a large cache of munitions to Saudi Arabia via a shady middleman, Alexis Tsipras in a surprise move requested that the debate over the matter in parliament be postponed until next Monday when he returns from Paris. In a letter to the President of the Parliament Nikos Voutsis, Mr. Tsipras, who had kept silent on the matter after it came to light, said he wished to be present in the debate to respond in person to “the campaign of slander and disinformation”, as he said.
In his letter, he threw down the gauntlet at New Democracy (ND) president Kyriakos Mitsotakis, accusing him of orchestrating the criticism and “moral perpetrator of slander” and inviting him to a “duel” in parliament. ND responded to the Greek PM’s claims accusing him of panicking over the scandal, as he [Tsipras] had remained silent over the issue for 17 days. “If Mr. Tsipras wants to defend his co-leader, let him schedule a new parliamentary debate whenever he wishes. Besides, this issue will not be exhausted tomorrow … “, ND said. It should be noted that according to parliamentary conventions, the Greek Defence Minister should have requested the postponement of the debate and not the Greek PM.