Theodorakis - Chronology (VIII)

 In Exile 1970-1974

 by Guy Wagner and Asteris Koutoulas

 Based on Ole Wahl Olsen

 Structure and pictures: Guy Wagner



Melina Mercouri welcomes Mikis

13.04. Servan-Schreiber had been inGreece making representations on behalf of members of the »Democratic Defence« league who had been condemned, when he suddenly had the unexpected chanceof getting Theodorakis out, but the junta kept Mikis' wife and his children as hostages.

Theodorakis' name had been on a list of 322 prisoners whom the junta was intending to free on its third anniversary in power, 21 April 1970. This was doubtless an attempt to influence the ministers of the Council of Europe who were to meet on 15 April in Strasbourg to decide whether the 1,200 page report of the Human Rights Commission on the use of torture in Greek prisons should be published. Seventeen member countries approved publication of the report in spite of the junta's efforts to bribe delegates.

Theodorakis left Le Bourget airport in an ambulance, and Servan-Schreiber read a statement he had drafted in the aircraft: »I still cannot understand that I am a free man. A few hours ago I was completely isolated. Now, after three tragic years, I can breathe free air again. But the taste of freedom is still bitter, for I have left my wife and two little children in Athens, and many of my comrades are still suffering. The fact that I am here this evening is due to international solidarity and many European friends.«

11.05. Myrto Theodorakis and the two children, Margarita and Yorgos, arrive in Paris while Theodorakis is speaking at a public meeting in the Salle de la Mutualité and starting his anti-junta-campaign. They had managed to escape from the Greek police with the help of French friends. For more than twenty hours they had fought storms and seasickness in a small boat before landing safe and sound in Sicily.

In Buenos-Aires

October: Theodorakis starts a series of world tours, and his concerts become the expression of his »declaration of war« on the colonels. He meets Salvador Allende in Chile and conceives the project of a work based on the »Canto General« by Pablo Neruda.

Theodorakis becomes the symbol of the Greek Resistance.


February Theodorakis founds the National Council of Resistance EAS. He wants to include all anti-dictatorial forces, from the royalists to the communists, but Andreas Papandreou refuses to involve the royalists. Theodorakis breaks with him.

02.05. EAS has its first meeting in Düsseldorf.


05.03. Theodorakis leaves the Interior Communist Party. New concert tours.


  The Finale of a glorious concert

11.02. First concert in Luxembourg

01.06. The royalist Greek Marine opposes the government, and Papadopoulos abolishes the Monarchy by a plebiscite.

29.08. Papadopoulos becomes President of the Hellenic Republic. Amnesty.

The last picture of Allende at the Moneda

11.09. Putsch in Chile. Salvador Allende is killed. Dictatorship of General Pinochet. Death of Pablo Neruda (24.9.).

Résultat de recherche d'images pour "Polytechnic insurrection 1973"They ask for Liberty

14.-17.11. The uprising of the students at the Polytechnic High School is brutally repressed. Papadopoulos imposes martial law.

25.11. Ioannides throws over Papadopoulos, and General Ghizikis becomes Head of State. Curfew in effect.


15.07. The Junta in Athens organises a putsch on Cyprus. Failed assassination attempt on President Makarios III, who flees to London.

After the invasion

20.07. Invasion of Cyprus by the Turkish Army. This is the end... for the Greek Junta!

23.07. Karamanlis is called back from exile in Paris to form a civil government.

© Guy Wagner & Asteris Koutoulas. All rights reserved