Veteran Greek Leftist Politician Dies

Posted August 28th, 2011 at 8:10 pm (UTC-5)
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Veteran left-wing Greek politician Leonidas Kyrkos, who faced prison and a death sentence because of his politics, has died at 87 after a long illness.

Kyrkos was a medical student who joined the Greek resistance against the Nazi occupation in World War Two.

Greek authorities arrested him after the war, sentencing him to death for belonging to the Communist Party. Just days before Kyrkos and several other prisoners were to stand before a firing squad, an international outcry led the government to back away from the death sentence.

Kyrkos later edited a leftist newspaper, was elected to parliament and spent another five years in jail under the military dictatorship.

In recent years, Kyrkos became a more moderate voice, becoming critical of the far left and urged cooperation with the ruling Socialists.