The court martial of two brigadiers, two colonels, six lieutenant-colonels, nine majors and three captains, began at Rouf Barracks, on the outskirts of Athens, Greece, on Monday (21 July).
GV EXT. Courthouse Building.
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CU ZOOM OUT TO SV President of the court and military members of court taking oath.
CU ZOOM OUT TO SV One of the 21 accused and other accused men in dock.(2 shots)
GV Accused men seated in dock and chatting.
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Background: The court martial of two brigadiers, two colonels, six lieutenant-colonels, nine majors and three captains, began at Rouf Barracks, on the outskirts of Athens, Greece, on Monday (21 July). They are charge with sedition against the present democratic government of the country in February of this year.
The 21 officers face a possible death sentence if found guilty. They were among 39 Army officers who were arrested on February 24, after the discovery of an alleged plot to seize military units in Greece. The prosecution alleges that if their plot had been successful, they would have compelled the Government to hold a referendum on whether the deposed King Constantine should return as the country's monarch.
The prosecution claims that their first aims would have been to force the Government to offer amnesty to the members on the deposed military junta, return the country to membership of the North Atlantic treaty Organization (NATO) and curb Communist activities.
Major Nicholas Tsangarakis, who testified about the plan to hold a referendum, was the first of 43 witnesses called by the prosecution. He said he had been approached to join the plot and had pretended to agree -- but he also informed the Armed Forces leadership.
Major Tsangarakis said the plotters, led by Major-General Demetrios Ioannides, had been promised the support to Royalist officers by retired Colonel Michael Arnaoutis, King Constantine's personal secretary.
"In exchange, the plotters had promised to hold a referendum to decide on the future of the King" said Major Tsangarakis.
The Monarchy was abolished in Greece last December when the Greek people voted against the return of King Constantine.
Of the 39 officers arrested in February, 18 have been freed because of lack of evidence.
Synopsis: At the Rouf Barracks on the outskirts of Athens, the court martial began on Monday of twenty-two Army officers who are accused of sedition against the present democratic government of Greece.
The President of the exclusively military court, has summoned forty-three witnesses to give evidence. The accused were among thirty-nine officers arrested in February after the discovery of an alleged plot to seize military units throughout the country. The prosecution alleges that if the plot had been successful, they would have compelled the Government to offer amnesty to the members of the deposed Military Junta, return the country to membership of NATO, and curb Communist activities in Greece.
Of the original thirty-nine arrested, eighteen were freed because of lack of evidence. One of the first witnesses testified that the plotters had been promised the support of Royalist officers by exiled King Constantine's personal secretary.