Elias Iliou

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Elias Iliou (Greek Ηλίας Ηλιού) was a Greek political figure of the 20th Century.

Iliou was born in Kastro on the island of Lemnos, in 1904. He studied law at Athens University Law School and became active in political life.

During the German occupation (1941 - 1944), Iliou joined leftist resistance group EAM - the National Liberation Front. Following World War II, Iliou defended several leftists in court and was exiled first to Ikaria then to Makronisos and finally to Agios Efstratios.

When he was released, Iliou became involved once more in political life and was elected member of Parliament in 1956, 1958, 1961, 1963 and 1964 under the banner of the United Democratic Left which he eventually came to lead.

After the April 21, 1967 coup d' etat, Iliou was placed in the hospital wing of the Averoff prison as he suffered from chronic health problems.

Iliou abandoned politics altogether in 1981. He died on January 24, 1985.

Incident in his life

King Constantine II had the three main political leaders, Kanellopoulos, Papandreou and Iliou, at the palace for consultations. After the talks were over, the young monarch escorted the three men to the coat rack and noticed Iliou's cane. The leftist politician lost no chance to display his wit: "It's not for you, Your Majesty", he said, "but for those lousy advisors of yours!"