A three-man Greek foreign ministry delegation visited Tehran last week in order to lobby the Iranian government to purchase Greek … T-bills or a portion of the Greek debt, according to report in the Athens daily “Ta Nea” on Monday.
According to columnist Giorgos Papachristos, the head of the Greek delegation was none other than Greek PM Alexis Tsipras’ first cousin, Giorgos, who was recently appointed as an adviser to the new Greek foreign minister.
“The effort proved fruitless, because Iranian government officials, with whom the three-member Greek delegation met, declined to enter into this ‘adventure’, citing repercussions from the economic sanctions that the international community has placed on Iran because of its nuclear program,” Papachristos, a well-known print journalist, wrote in his column.
According to the report, there was an effort on the part of the radical leftist government to keep the Tsipras (the cousin) mission confidential, given the sensitive nature of the West’s relations with Iran, and especially in light of the Israel’s position on keeping up pressure on Tehran over its nuclear ambitions.
The article also drew a reaction by the main opposition New Democracy party, with MP and former foreign ministry spokesman George Koumoutsakos asking why the Greek delegation traveled to Tehran. He tabled his question to the Greek foreign minister.
Koumoutsakos emphasized that if the press report proves true and wasn’t announced, then as “an exercise in secret diplomacy amid the current economic and political juncture, the meeting raises questions over its intent and hoped for results, while it could also have a negative effect on our relations with a series of countries and allies, especially ones in the wider region — for instance, Israel and Egypt, whose cooperation with our country is of particular significance.”