The appointment of economist Elena Panaritis as Greece’s new representative at the International Monetary Fund has prompted criticism from within SYRIZA, as well as from opposition parties.
The Finance Ministry announced on Friday evening that Panaritis, who has worked at the World Bank in the past, would be replacing Greece’s current representative Thanos Katsambas.
Sources said that Alternate Foreign Minister Euclid Tsakalotos opposed the appointment, Deputy Prime Minister Yiannis Dragasakis was neutral but that Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis and Development Minister Giorgos Stathakis backed the proposal.
Panaritis was a PASOK MP between 2009 and 2012. Over the last few months, she has been an adviser to Varoufakis and has been involved in Greece’s negotiations with lenders.
Her appointment failed to impress a number of SYRIZA officials. MEP Dimitris Papadimoulis called on Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to rethink the government’s choice, while MP Sofia Sakorafa said that the decision to appoint the ex-PASOK lawmaker went “beyond the limit.”
PASOK accused Panaritis of being a «political opportunist."