PM Tsipras says gov’t followed all proper channels in S. Arabia arms deal

The Greek government followed all proper channels and verified that the man signing a controversial arms deal between Greece and Saudi Arabia was officially representing the Arab country, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said in Parliament on Monday.

The deal was at the center of a heated discussion following a query by the opposition, which cited several irregularities in the agreement, from the role of a particular person appearing as middleman (Vassilis Papadopoulos) to the actual number of surplus Greek shells sold to the Arab country.
Greek law prohibits middlemen in defence contracts.

In the debate in Parliament, Tsipras said that Greece had asked its military attaché in the Middle East to verify the authenticity of the documents Papadopoulos filed as representative. “Saudi Arabia responded that the document was authentic,” Tsipras insisted, therefore this proved that “there is no question of there being a middleman, but an agreement between two countries.”

The issue has been stirred up by the main opposition for no reason, he said, but to discredit and destabilize the government.