Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras will meet on Monday with the parents of convicted bank robber Nikos Romanos who is on hunger strike over the court’s denial to grant him educational prison leave.
The 21-year-old man is hospitalized at Gennimatas Hospital of Athens after 26 days of refusing to receive food. Romanos has denied the solution to attend courses via the internet and is also denying liquids. He insists that he has the right to receive an educational leave to attend the Athens Technical College.
A new court order was issued today saying that Romanos should be fed even against his will if he shows suicidal tendencies.
A bill allowing prison inmates in Greece the right to study by the method of distance learning was submitted to Parliament by Justice Minister Charalambos Athanasiou over the weekend and prompted vehement debate in the House. The bill had been due for submission Tuesday but was brought forward in view of the increasingly fragile health of the hunger striker.
Opposition parties accuse the government for denying Romanos’ rights. Addressing Parliament on Saturday, Athanasiou appealed to opposition MPs not to capitalize on the Romanos affair, saying “no one has the right to play with the life of a young person.”
SYRIZA MP Zoe Constantopoulou called on the judiciary to revoke a ruling that had denied Romanos the right to study furloughs, saying the youth’s death would leave “an open wound in judicial history.”