|General Secretary||Euthimios Drosos|
|Founded||24 February 2012|
|Split from||New Democracy|
196, Syngrou Ave.|
176 71 Athens
|European Parliament group||No MEPs|
We are many—|
We are independent—
We are Greeks
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The Independent Greeks (Greek: Ανεξάρτητοι Έλληνες (ΑΝΕΛ), Anexartitoi Ellines, ANEL) is a conservative, national-conservative, and right-wing populist political party in Greece. The party won 10 seats in the September 2015 parliamentary election and agreed to renew its coalition government with the Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA).
The party was created on 24 February 2012 by Panos Kammenos, a former Member of Parliament (MP) for the conservative party New Democracy (ND). Kammenos had been expelled from the New Democracy parliamentary group after voting against Lucas Papademos' coalition government in a vote of confidence. The party's founding declaration was issued on 11 March 2012. Ten former ND deputies were founding members of the party, namely Elena Kountoura, Christos Zois, Kostas Markopoulos, Dimitrios G. Stamatis, Spyros Galinos, Mika Iatridi, Maria Kollia-Tsaroucha, Panagiotis Melas and Michalis Giannakis
The party gained 10.6% of the vote and 33 MPs in the parliamentary election in May 2012. In the snap June 2012 legislative election, ANEL received 7.5% of the vote, which reduced the party's representation to 20 MPs.
In the 2014 European Parliament election held on 25 May 2014, ANEL received 3.5% of the vote, electing a single MEP who sits with the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) group. The MEP, Notis Marias, left ANEL, however, and is now an independent member of the ECR group.
In the January 2015 legislative election held on 25 January 2015, ANEL received 4.75% of the vote and returned 13 MPs to the Hellenic Parliament. On 26 January 2015, ANEL agreed to form a governing coalition with the Coalition of the Radical Left.
The second election of the year, the September 2015 legislative election on 20 September 2015, returned ANEL to parliament with 10 seats from 3.69% of the vote. Syriza again agreed to form a coalition government with ANEL.
Economically, the party calls for revoking the first and second memorandums, loan agreements between Greece, the EU and the International Monetary Fund. Further, it considers the agreements illegal and calls for lifting immunity from and then investigating and prosecuting Greek ministers, parliamentarians, and officials who negotiated the agreements or who otherwise bear blame for Greece's economic crisis.
In opposing the memorandums negotiated with 'The Troika', party leader Kammenos said Greece had become a "laboratory animal" in an austerity experiment conducted by the IMF and EU, who "used the public debt as a means of control." Kammenos has focused much of his fire on Germany, stating that "Germany is not treating Greece as a partner but as its master. … It tries to turn a Europe of independent states into a Europe dominated by Germany."
The party's official program states it will repudiate part of Greece's debt because it was created by speculators in a conspiracy to bring Greece to the edge of bankruptcy. It announced in December 2012 that it would start working to create a patriotic Democratic Front, whose aim is to save "Greece from the neo-liberal avalanche."
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Members of Parliament
As of 27 June 2018 the Independent Greeks have seven MPs in the Hellenic Parliament:
|Panagiotis (Panos) Kammenos||Athens B|
|Elena Kountoura||Athens A|
|Athanasios Papachristopoulos||Athens B|
|Konstantinos Zouraris||Thessaloniki A|
On 16 June 2018 Dimitrios Kammenos was expelled from the party, because he voted to topple the government in a recent no confidence vote tabled by Official Opposition party New Democracy. On 26 June Georgios Lazaridis left his party’s parliamentary group and declared himself independent citing opposition to the Greece-Republic of Macedonia naming agreement signed on 17 June 2018, as the reason for leaving the party.
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