Tensions peak over parliamentary panel

Political tensions intensified on Friday after Parliament Speaker Konstantinos Tasoulas rejected a complaint by SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras over the exemption of leftist MPs Pavlos Polakis and Dimitris Tzanakopoulos from a House committee probing alleged meddling by former alternate justice minister Dimitris Papangelopoulos in the Novartis investigation.

In a letter to Tsipras, Tasoulas rejected the former premier's demand that he restore "parliamentary order" by reinstating the two leftist MPS, declaring that the decision to remove them had been in keeping with the "legal framework" of the committee which, he said, "although comprised of MPs, functions as a judicial organ, not a political one, that is independently."

Tasoulas was responding to a letter from Tsipras, describing the exemption of the two MPs' ejection from the panel as "illegal" and a "brute...

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