Former Greek President Christos Sartzetakis is dead

It was his fight as a judge under the dictatorship of the colonels that made him known and even inspired the film “Z” by Costa Gavras. The former president of the Greek Republic Christos Sartzetakis died Thursday at the age of 92 of pulmonary failure, announced the Laiko hospital in Athens where he was hospitalized.

Born in 1929 in Thessaloniki, Greece’s second city, he ruled the country from 1985 to 1990. Earlier in 1963, when he was a judge, he led the investigation into the murder of left-wing deputy Grigoris Lambrakis by two right-wing extremists, which occurred just before the colonels took power. He had then opposed the pressures of the political and judicial leaders of the military dictatorship.

“Exemplary judicial independence and ethics”

Under the ruling junta, he was forced to leave office in 1968, he was arrested, tortured and imprisoned for nearly a year without trial. After the fall of the dictatorship in 1974, he became a judge at the Court of Appeal.

The current President of the Republic, Katerina Sakellaropoulou, hailed “a full-fledged justice official, who, in difficult times for the country and democracy, handled as an investigator the case of the murder of Lambrakis with independence and exemplary judicial ethics, paying a heavy price for his actions under the junta”.

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