M. Stasinopoulos, 99; President of Greece After Military Junta

From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Michalis Stasinopoulos, 99, a legal scholar who challenged Greece's 1967-74 military dictatorship and served as president after it collapsed, died Thursday, according to the Athens News Agency, which listed no place or specific cause of death.

As head of the Council of State, Greece's highest legal panel, Stasinopoulos declared military rule illegal. The junta leaders ignored his ruling; nevertheless, the historic decision served as a rallying point for resistance leaders.

After a public referendum abolished Greece's monarchy and established a presidential system of government in 1974, Stasinopoulos was elected interim president.

He left office the following year, when parliament selected his successor.

Stasinopoulos taught law at several universities in Greece. He also served as ad hoc judge at the International Court of Justice at The Hague from 1976 to 1978.

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