Greek opposition leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis strongly condemned the use of force and tear gas against tens of thousands of protesters who gathered in Athens yesterday to rally against the Macedonia name deal pushed by the Alexis Tsipras Government.

The Greek people spoke out today and we all must listen to what they are saying, primarily Mr. Tsipras and the supporters of the Prespa deal. They have no mandate to vote on this deal in the Parliament, said Mitsotakis.

His New Democracy party, which enjoys a 2:1 lead in the polls against Tsipras’ SYRIZA ahead of the elections expected no later than October, opposes the deal under which Greece would have to allow Macedonia to join NATO and open EU accession talks in exchange for renaming the country North Macedonia and rewriting much of its history. The deal was rejected in a referendum in Macedonia but pushed through Parliament despite this, while Tsipras did not call for a referendum and is pressuring members of Parliament to support the deal later this week.

The Government did not hesitate to use tear gas against hundreds of thousands of peaceful protesters, including families with little children and elderly. We demand responsibility for what happened on Sytangma square. The artificial majorities in Parliament are empty when compared to the millions of Greeks who disagree with this, Mitsotakis added, announcing a fight in Parliament against the deal.