Renowned anti-junta navy commander dies

In 1973, Nikos Pappas led a mutiny against the dictatorship on the Velos navy destroyer

Nikos Pappas Nikos Pappas Nikos Pappas, a former Greek navy commander who is best remembered for striking a major blow to the 1967-1974 junta’s prestige and power by leading a mutiny, has died. He was 83.

In May 1973, Pappas was the commander of the Velos, which was participating in a Nato patrol in Italian waters. During the exercise, when he heard that a number of democratically minded officers had been arrested in Greece, Pappas refused to sail the destroyer back to Greece, taking it instead to Italy, where he and several officers and crew members requested political asylum.

It was one of the first sign of resistance by the military toward the dictatorship.

Anchored at Faliro Bay, the Velos has been transformed into a museum, focusing on the antidictatorship struggle from 1967 to 1974.

Pappas was born in 1930 in Kymi, on the island of Evia. 


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