Greek Government Creates Bipartisan Committee Over Greek Diaspora Vote



Greece’s Ministry of the Interior will soon establish a bipartisan committee to discuss the technicalities of the bill which aims to grant suffrage rights to Greeks who live abroad  so that they can vote from their place of residence.

Minister of the Interior Takis Theodorikakos said on Monday that he will send letters to all parliamentary parties during the day to ask them to designate a representative who will take part in committee discussions.

The aim of this bipartisan committee will be to consult and find common ground on the specifics of the electoral process, including the way in which constituents who live abroad will vote — and even be able to be elected themselves — as well as other technical details of the coming bill.

Theodorikakos said that the government’s aim is for the committee to begin discussions as soon as the end of this week.

Speaking about the main opposition SYRIZA party, which has expressed serious reservations about the right to vote for Greeks living abroad, Theodorikakos urged the left-wing party to send a representative and discuss the bill.

The Minister of the Interior also highlighted the need for everyone to compromise, so that the upcoming reform could obtain as many as 300 positive votes — out of a total of 300 votes cast.

It is noted that all parliamentary parties other than SYRIZA agree that the vote of Greeks abroad should be counted in the total of the electorate.

SYRIZA prefers a ”closed” system, similar to that of Italy, where the votes of citizens living abroad count only toward the election of their own representatives, rather than in the voting results of the entire country as a whole.