Former PASOK minister launches new party, Pact for a New Greece

Former Health and Labor Minister Andreas Loverdos on Monday launched a new party called “Pact for a New Greece,” lashing out at PASOK to which he belonged for many years for joining the current coalition government and eyeing supporters of the Socialist party and Democratic Left, the junior partner in the coalition.

The ex-minister had been planning the launch of his party for several months and had originally intended to call it RIKSSY, the Greek acronym for “Radical Movement of Social Democratic Alliance,” but he reportedly decided to drop this name as it resembles the Greek word meaning rift and would have negative associations.

Addressing a press conference, Loverdos said his aim was not to create “another protest group” but a “new and responsible party whose members will come chiefly from the private sector.”

Positioning his party between conservative New Democracy, which leads the governing coalition, and the main leftist opposition SYRIZA on Greece’s political spectrum, Loverdos pointed to supporters of PASOK and Democratic Left as potential reservoirs for his own party support.

Since Loverdos announced his intention to form a “pro-European, reformist” movement last December, some 2,000 members have reportedly already joined.