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Greece: court victory for conscientious objector

On 30 March, CO Baltoukas was declared innocent unanimously by the Appeal Military Court at Thessaloniki. Nikolaos Baltoukas, 38, had been sentenced to a suspended 15-month for insubordination by the Military Court of Xanthi on 18 May 2005. Nikos Baltoukas, had performed his military service in 1990-91. When he was called up for reserve duty on 31 October 2004, he refused to report, based on reasons of conscience. He was thus charged with insubordination, which then lead to the sentence of 15 months, which has new been overturned.

However, it is too early to see a change of policy in this sentence. More appeal trials are coming up, among them the cases of Lazaros Petromelidis (4 May 2006) and Georgios Monastiriotis (31 October 2006).

Sources: co-alert, 18 May 2005, email Alexia Tsouni, 30 March 2006