ATHENS – Public Order Minister Vassilis Kikilias said after his return from Washington, D.C., that Greece would provide information on people entering the European Union through Greece.
Kikilias, a former pro basketball player with no experience in law enforcement, spoke with reporters after briefing Prime Minister Antonis Samaras on the visit to the U.S. Kikilias met there with officials from the FBI, CIA and National Security Agency.
“There will be a broadening of cooperation as regards screening so that Greek citizens can feel safe in their movements in and out of the country,” Kikilias said.
He didn’t elaborate on media reports that Greek and US officials discussed the possibility of jihadists passing through Greece but he noted that the problem of radical Islamic fighters was obviously a priority for Washington and that Athens stood ready to help.
“We are working with them on this and other matters,” he said. He added that Greece was “a pillar of stability” in a volatile region.
Asked whether US authorities were planning to issue an announcement regarding a bounty on November 17 convict Christodoulos Xiros, who has been a fugitive since walking away from a holiday vacation he was given, Kikilias wouldn’t asnwer. “Announcements will be issued by the State Department,” he said.
Greek authorities have offered a 1-million-euro reward for information leading to the arrest of the 55-year-old Xiros, who vowed a return to violence in a video released on the Internet shortly after his disappearance last January.
Despite serving six life sentences for his role in six assassinations, including five Americans, Xiros was given a furlough on the promise he would return. The authorities believed him.