Diamantopoulou is latest ex-PASOK minister to break from party, eye new group

Ex-Education Minister Anna Diamantopoulou became on Friday the latest member of the PASOK cabinet serving when Greece signed its bailout deal with the troika in May 2010 to make plans to create a new party.

Speaking to state-run NET TV in an interview, Diamantopoulou suggested that the Socialist party had run its course. “PASOK has no reason to exist anymore,” she said. “Today, I am like millions of others who could express themselves through PASOK over the past 40 years but can no longer do so.”

Diamantopoulou, 54, first became an MP with the Socialists in 1996 and from 1999 to 2004 held the position of European Commissioner for Employment and Social Affairs. She suggested Greece needs a new party that can speak for disgruntled PASOK supporters but lamented the lack of a leader to unite people. “It is my ambition to be able to contribute to this,” said Diamantopoulou, who recently helped create the pro-reform DIKTYO think-tank.

If Diamantopoulou starts her own party, she will be following in the footsteps of former cabinet colleagues Louka Katseli, who formed Koinoniki Symfonia (Social Pact) ahead of last summer’s elections, and Andreas Loverdos who launched RIKSSY last month. Former government spokesman Ilias Mosialos is involved with the Dynamiki Ellada movement.