Politics of Greece

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In comparative NGO studies , Greece ranks among the highest in press freedom worldwide.

The Greek media, collectively, is a very influential institution — usually aggressive, sensationalist. As with many countries, most of the media are owned by businessmen with commercial interests in other sectors of the economy. There are often accusations of newspapers, magazines, and radio and TV channels being used to promote their commercial enterprises as well as to seek political influence.

In 1994, the Ministry of Press and Information was established to deal with media and communication issues. ERT S.A., a public corporation supervised by the Minister of Press, operates three national television channels and five national radio channels. The Minister of Press also serves as the primary government spokesperson.

The Secretary General of Press and Information prepares the semi-official Athens News Agency (ANA) Bulletin. Along with AP and Reuters, this is a primary source of information for the Greek press. The Ministry of Press and Information also issues the semi-official Macedonian News Agency (MPE) Bulletin, which is distributed throughout the Balkan region. For international news, CNN is a particular influence in the Greek market; the major TV channels often use it as a source. State and private TV stations also use Eurovision and Visnews as sources. While few papers and stations have overseas correspondents, those few correspondents abroad can be very influential.

In 1988, a new law provided the legal framework for the establishment of private radio stations and, in 1989, private TV stations. According to the law, supervision of radio and television is exercised by the National Radio and Television Council. In practice, however, official licensing has been delayed for many years. Because of this, there has been a proliferation of private radio and TV stations, as well as European satellite channels, including Euronews. More than 1,000 radio stations were operating before March 2002, when the government implemented plans to reallocate TV frequencies and issue licenses as authorized by the 1993 Media Law, effectively reducing this number.

Military Service

12 months for all males of 18 years of age; Compulsory with fines and imprisonment if denied. Members of families with 3 children serve a reduced time of 9 months. Military Service denial can also be substituted by a longer public service. Limited steps have been taken to turn the Greek military into a semi-professional army in the last years, leading to the gradual decrease of the service from 18 to 12 months and the insertion of a great number of "professional" military personnel in most vertices of the force.


  1. ↑ Article 16 of the Constitution of Greece.
  2. ↑ ibid, Section 5: "Education at university level shall be provided exclusively by institutions which are fully self-governed public law legal persons".


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