The Alternate Minister of Agricultural Development and Food Markos Bolaris has responded to allegations from the Human Rights Department of SYRIZA, regarding his ‘implication’ in the castigation of HIV positive women in 2012, when Andreas Loverdos was Minister of Health.
SYRIZA’s Human Rights Department issued a statement expressing its dismay at the appointment of Mr. Bolaris as Alternate Minister of Agricultural Development and Food and noted he was Mr. Loverdos’ deputy minister at the time. Mr. Bolaris responded that as deputy minister he did not have any involvement in the castigation of the women and claimed that there were ‘ulterior motives’ at play. The press office of SYRIZA later issued a statement, supporting Mr. Bolaris.
Scores of HIV-positive women ‘named and shamed’ in 2012
In 2012 dozens of HIV positive women were arrested and charged with intending to cause major harm by having unprotected sex with clients. Mr. Loverdos cited a law on limiting the spread of infectious diseases to publish photos of the women, causing major controversy, both within and outside of Greece.
The controversial law that allowed the publication of the photos was temporarily repealed and later reinstated by New Democracy’s Adonis Georgiadis. Many of the HIV-positive women were eventually found innocent in the courts and two even managed to receive compensation from the Hellenic State for unjust imprisonment. The European Court of Human Rights is also expected to issue a ruling on the matter.