Tom Hanks, wife Rita Wilson get Greek citizenship for wildfire aid

Tom Hanks and his wife, Rita Wilson, were granted Greek citizenship for their fundraising efforts for the deadly Athens wildfire in 2018.

Tom Hanks and wife Rita Wilson

However, celebrations were short-lived as the country’s opposition levied criticism at Prime minister Kyriakos Mitsotaki for using a military helicopter to meet the couple to mark the moment.

Prime Minister Mitsotaki shared a picture of himself with wife, Mareva Grabowski-Mitsotaki, to Instagram yesterday, July 26, which showed them with Hanks and Wilson holding up their new Greek passports.

Mitsotaki captioned the post, “Rita Wilson and Tom Hanks are now proud Greek citizens.”

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitstotakis, second left, his wife Mareva Grabowski-Mitsotaki, left, pose with actor Tom Hanks (right) and his wife Rita Wilson holding up their new Greek passports, in the island of Antiparos, Greece on Saturday, July 25, 2020. (Photo: Greek Prime Minister’s Office via AP)

The main left-wing opposition Syriza party accused the prime minister of using Greece’s military helicopters like a “personal radio taxi.”

However, Government spokesman Stelios Petsas today said the Mitsokais travelled to the island of Paros on a commercial flight Saturday, then  travelled to nearby Antiparos, where Hanks and Wilson have a holiday home. They then used a military helicopter for a trip to the ancient theatre of Epidaurus on yesterday to watch the performance of an ancient tragedy.

Petsas argued that Mitsotakis was performing his duties as prime minister by attending an “important cultural event.”

Neither the government representative or the opposition referred to Hanks by name.