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Foreign media feature latest turns in Greek #MeToo movement

Following the latest developments regarding the arrest and indictment of the former artistic director of the National Theater, Dimitris Lignadis, the international media in America, Britain and France are commenting on the dawn of the #MeToo movement in Greece.

This is not the first time that foreign media have dealt with developments in the field of theater and sports. However, the latest developments with Dimitris Lignadis, which led to the first arrest of a figurehead from the field of art, again attracted the interest of major news outlets around the world.

Lignadis, director of the National Theater, until a few days ago was arrested for the rape of minors after at least to the suit by at least two victims that were raped a few years ago. Neighbors say that foreign (i.e. refugee minors) adolescents would visit his home on a regular basis. But it seems Lignadis is the tip of an iceberg of sexual and physical abuse by a number of actors and directors. 

RTL: The law of silence in Greece has been broken

More than three years since the #MeToo movement, the law of silence in Greece was broken by Sofia Bekatorou, a two-time Sailing Olympian, writes the French RTL about the case, including the news of the arrest of Dimitris Lignadis.

"The 56-year-old submitted his resignation on February 6 from the position of artistic director of the National Theater, speaking of a" toxic climate of rumors," the publication states.

Euronews: The former artistic director of the National Theater is accused of rape

The well-known theatrical actor and director appeared voluntarily at Police HQ, according to the relevant publication of Euronews, which includes a brief report on the torrent of revelations that have shaken the field of theater and sports in Greece.

"Well-known actors and directors were found in the" eye of the storm ", but Lignafis is the first to be arrested" notes the publication that also includes the statements of the Minister of Culture, but also the reactions of the opposition from Friday, when Lina Mendoni also spoke for the case.

 "Greek #Metoo: Prominent actor, Dimitris Lignadis arrested after rape charges" is the BBC headline on the subject. The article notes that the 56-year-old was arrested weeks after the revelations of Olympian Sofia Bekatorou that he was a victim of sexual abuse by a member of the Hellenic Sailing Federation that started the #Metoo movement in the country.

Nytimes: Dimitris Lignadis was arrested

With a photo of Dimitris Lignadis, the New York Times publishes the developments in the Greek theater in an article with the title "Ex-Artistic Director of Greece’s National Theater Held After Rape Arrest Warrant".

According to the article, Dimitris Lignadis is "the most prominent case among a series of directors and actors who were named in a storm of complaints that shook the art world in Greece."

Guardian: The arrest of Lignadis, the latest development in the Greek #MeToo

The Guardian article states that "Greek police have arrested a prominent theater director on charges of rape, the latest development in the" MeToo "scandal that is unfolding shaking the country's artistic establishment."

The article commented that Greek television broadcast footage of Dimitris Lignadis being handcuffed and taken to the investigator on Sunday. The Guardian comments that the case has taken on political proportions with "opposition parties blaming the government and the culture minister for a failed cover-up attempt, demanding her resignation".

At the same time, the article hosts some of the statements of the Minister of Culture, Lina Mendoni on Friday, who characterized the former director of the National Theater as a "dangerous man".

  • Published in Greece

Two men sentenced to life for rape and murder of Topaloudi

Two men who were found guilty of gang-raping and murdering 21-year-old university student Eleni Topaloudi on Rhodes in November 2018 were sentenced on Friday to life imprisonment and an additional 15 years each. The ruling was unanimous.

The prosecutor, Aristotelia Doga, had earlier rejected the defence's proposal to consider mitigating factors and called for the same sentence for the two defendants – a 23-year-old Greek man and a 21-year-old Albanian national.

Noting that the pair had not expressed regret for their crime and accusing them of “moral perversion,” Doga said they did not deserve any leniency from the court. 

The body of Topaloudi was found in the sea by the coast guard on November 28. The court heard how the two men lured Topaloudi to one of their homes, where they raped and beat her before throwing her off a cliff into the sea. 

The young woman was studying on Rhodes far from her home in the region of Evros. As it transpired from court records and police accounts, one of the men, the Albanian national had lured the young womsn saying they would go for a ride in a pickup and grab a bite to eat. Unbeknownst to her the other culprit, hailing from Rhodes, was hidden in the back of the pickup. The driver then detoured to Lindos and a house belonging to the Greek. there they raped her, beat her with an clothes iron and dumped her, still alive, in the sea, from a height of over 10 meters, where she eventually died of drowning.

During the trial the defendants tried to blame ech other for the killing.

  • Published in Greece
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