Liberal Party (Greece)

Komma Fileleftheron (Greek: Κόμμα Φιλελευθέρων - literally "Party of Liberals"; usually translated as "Liberal Party") was one of the major Greek political parties of the early 20th century.

Founded as the "Xipoliton" ("barefoot") party in Crete (then an autonomous region of the Ottoman Empire), its early leaders were Kostis Mitsotakis (Grandfather of Konstantinos Mitsotakis) and Eleftherios Venizelos. After the annexation of Crete by Greece, Venizelos moved to Athens and turned the party into a national one, under the "Fileleftheron" name in 1910. For the following 25 years, the fate of the party would be tied to that of Venizelos. The party was legally disbanded after the failed Nikolaos Plastiras coup of 1935, although the organization remained active.

During World War II, a Greek government-in-exile was formed in Cairo, Egypt, with the assistance of the British. The government was formed almost entirely of prominent Liberals, including Georgios Papandreou and Sophoklis Venizelos, even as King George (long suspected by the British for pro-German leanings) remained the official head of state. The party was reformed after the war, until it merged into Center Union ("Enosi Kentrou") in 1961.

In the 1980s, the party reemerged under the leadership of Nikitas Venizelos, a grandson of the party's founder. Claiming to be the same party as the one founded in 1910, it continues to contest elections.

Electoral results

Prominent members

(Name, highest office as a party member, year)
*Eleftherios Venizelos, leader, Prime Minister (1910)
*Georgios Kafantaris, Prime Minister (1924)
*Andreas Michalakopoulos, Prime Minister (1924)
*Sophoklis Venizelos, Prime Minister (1944)
*Georgios Papandreou, Prime Minister (1946)
*Konstantinos Mitsotakis, MP (1946)

Leaders

*Eleftherios Venizelos, 1910–1936
*Themistoklis Sophoulis, 1936–1948
*Sophoklis Venizelos, 1948–1961
*Nikitas Venizelos
*Manolis Kalligiannis, 1996–present

External links

* [http://www.liberalparty.gr/ Party website]

ee also

*Venizelism
*Eleftherios Venizelos
*History of Modern Greece


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