Samaras, Venizelos to meet ahead of troika visit

Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and the coalition government’s deputy Prime Minister Evangelos Venizelos will meet at the Maximos Mansion on Thursday ahead of a visit by troika’s technical teams early next month.

On top of key unresolved issues in negotiations with the country’s foreign lenders, such as pension reform and public sector firings, the two men are expected to talk about the successor to Defense Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos who assumes the European Commission’s immigration portfolio on November 1.

Analysts say that the new defense minister will also come from conservative New Democracy. MP Dora Bakoyannis has been mentioned as a possible successor.

Sources close to the prime minister have said that the replacement may come with a mini government reshuffle.

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