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State Dept. refutes AMNA on Dimadis-Soultoyannis case

The "National Herald" published the State Department's Diplomatic Security Office declassified documents, which clarify the case, which Greek state news agency AMNA had reported on concerning the Greek journalists that had been allegedly arrested and spoke of forgery on their part and that they were in danger of being prosecuted by the US authorities, while Mr Pappas spoke of "tremendous wretchedness" in his statements.

A few days later, AMNA had defended the original telegram about the arrest, insisting that there was a police report on the case.

The recent declassification of the secret documents of the State Department's Diplomatic Security Service (DS), which conducted the check of the data of the two journalists outside the Westin Grand Central Hotel at the request of the Greek mission, brings the case back to the spotlight and gives a different picture and description of the events.

According to the declassified documents revealed by the National Herald, "the day (19/9/2016) following the verification of the data of the two journalists provoked by the Greek mission, the latter asked the DS officers to give it a Police Report on the two journalists. "

The Greek mission received from the responsible US authorities the answer that there was no Police report - since there was no arrest of the two journalists.

"The DS sent an informal response to the Greek mission that includes the actual events as recorded by US authorities and which, as it turned out, were contrary to what was reported by AMNA, ERT and other Greek media, and which had been confirmed indirectly by a statement made by the then Minister of State, Mr. Nikos Pappas.

It is clear from the declassified documents that Mr. Thanos Dimadis and his colleague Dimitris Soultoyiannis were neither arrested for forgery nor forged anything, nor misrepresented themselves to the US authorities, nor disguised when asked to verify their data, nor were they temporarily released, nor did they face the risk of persecution by US police authorities, nor the threat of their imprisonment or expulsion, as the Greek media reported, the National Herald says.

According to DS officials who recorded the events, the Greek delegation considered the two suspect journalists as they were passing their time (loitering as is characteristically recorded in a declassified documents) at the hotel cafe.

When checking their data, "both people claimed to be working  for Greek TV channels in order to report on Greek ministers visiting New York. Both have claimed to be foreign correspondents ... ".

"Indeed, in the declassified documents it is recorded that the Greek mission itself admitted that" it recognized Mr. Dimadis as a well-known journalist in Greece" (" ... The Special Representatives of the Diplomatic Security Service (DS) met with a Greek delegation who said it recognized Mr. Dimadis as a well-known journalist from Greece but that the channel he is working on is similar to the Paparazzi style of the American TMZ network ... ").

Also, according to the "National Herald", photographic material of official members of the Greek mission shopping in Manhattan was found on the camera of Mr. Thanos Dimadis.

Elsewhere in their internal correspondence, the State Department officials also reiterate by saying that "Special Representatives of the US Department of State's Security Service did not arrest Mr. Thanos Dimadis and his colleague from Star Channel on 17 September 2016, at the Westin Hotel in New York during the 71st United Nations Summit. We refer you to the New York Police to confirm that the two people were not arrested by the New York Police or any other Authority ".

Source: Th. Talmukos / National Herald, Icfimerida