The profile of Greece’s caretaker government

The profile of Greece’s caretaker government

A 16-member caretaker government, led by senior judge Ioannis Sarmas, will be sworn in at noon at the Presidential Mansion.

Special attention has been given to the crucial ministries of Foreign Affairs and Defense. Vassilis Kaskarelis, an experienced diplomat with service in Washington and the European Union, will take the helm at the Foreign Ministry. The Defense Ministry will be headed by Alkiviadis Stefanis, a seasoned former deputy defense minister and former chief of the Army General Staff. In the critically important Ministry of Citizen Protection, Evangelos Tournas, who has served as deputy minister of citizen protection, will assume the role to ensure continuity and familiarity with all the issues. Charalambos Lalousis, a former chief of the Army General Staff, will assume the Ministry of Civil Protection. The new health minister is Anastasia Kotanidou, a highly experienced and capable professor at Athens Medical School and head of intensive care at Evangelismos Hospital.

The composition of the caretaker government aims to have ministers directly related to their respective fields. For example, the former rector of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (EKPA), Christos Kittas, will serve as education minister. Giorgos Koumendakis, the artistic director of the National Opera, will assume the Ministry of Culture.

A notable appointment is Theodore Pelagidis, professor of economics at the University fo Piraeus and deputy governor of the Bank of Greece, who will take over the Ministry of Finance. This position is considered crucial as the evaluation of Greece’s third request to the Recovery and Resilience Facility, which concerns the disbursement of a total of 1.72 billion euros for Greece 2.0 subsidies, will be carried out by the European Commission in June. Conservative leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis emphasized the significance of this evaluation in a letter to Sarmas. Additionally, meetings are planned for June between the technical delegations of the Greek authorities and the corresponding delegations of the European institutions as part of the third post-program surveillance report, expected to be finalized and published by the end of the current year’s third quarter.

Eleni Louri-Dendrinou, a professor at Athens University of Economics and Business (AUEB), has been appointed as the new development minister. Patrina Paparrigopoulou, a professor of public law, will assume the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs. Pantelis Kapros, professor of energy economics and operational research at the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering of the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA), will take over the Ministry of Environment and Energy.

Finally, Vassilis Skouris, emeritus professor at the Law School of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and former president of the Court of Justice of the European Union, becomes the minister of state. He previously served twice as a caretaker minister of internal affairs in 1989 and 1996. Journalist Ilias Siakantaris will serve as the government spokesperson.

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