US amb. calls for vigilance against ‘manipulation’ in coming Greek elections
The US ambassador in Greece on Tuesday said democratic institutions and the press should be vigilant over possible “manipulation of information” in upcoming elections in the east Mediterranean country, a high-profile statement pointing to Moscow.
In a statement on the sidelines of an event called “Disinfo Week”, US envoy Geoffrey Pyatt, who previously served as Washington’s ambassador to the Ukraine, said there is evidence of manipulation of certain information being circulated in Greece, while also referring to efforts to “undermine” the Ecumenical Patriarchate’s role.
The Ecumenical Patriarchate, seated in Istanbul, recently recognized the autocephaly of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, a move that enraged the Russian Orthodox Church and the Kremlin.
Pyatt’s exact comment, as relayed by the US embassy’s website, reads:
“Ambassador Pyatt, are you worried we might have a disinformation campaign in Greece as the Euroelections, local elections, and political elections come close?
As I said, all of our open societies are vulnerable to these new tools. We learned this the hard way in the United States during our presidential election. We’ve seen evidence of this kind of manipulation of information in Greece. We’ve seen Russian efforts in the Church, the efforts to undermine the role of the Ecumenical Patriarch. I cannot tell you that I have seen evidence of efforts in order to meddle in Greece’s upcoming elections, but the purpose of this event tonight is to raise awareness so that Greece’s democratic institutions, Greece’s free press — which are all quite strong — can be alert and able to respond.”
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