Ministry ‘surprised’ by space chief’s resignation

Ministry ‘surprised’ by space chief’s resignation

The ministry of digital policy on Wednesday appeared unperturbed by the resignation of distinguished Greek-American scientist Stamatios Krimigis from the helm of Greece’s newly established Hellenic Space Agency (HSA) just weeks into his tenure, saying "it was surprised" by what it described as a hasty decision.

"It is, of course, surprising, the speed with which he has assessed and irrevocably judged within four weeks the country's efforts to design and implement a coordinated national strategy in the field of space," the ministry said in a statement.

"The initiative undertaken by the ministry continues. Each person will be judged by their choices."

The ministry thanked Krimigis and announced that Christodoulos Protopappas, an electrical engineer and former President of the European Satellite Operators Association, is appointed to lead HSA.

In a lengthy letter dated April 16 and outlining the reasons for his decision, the head emeritus of the Space Department Applied Physics Laboratory at Johns Hopkins University in the United States accused Telecommunications Minister Nikos Pappas of making decisions that “effectively annulled the HSA’s entire purpose and rendered it an unreliable bureaucratic structure that could become subservient to any political chief.”

“It is my belief that there is a concerted effort to manipulate HSA toward specific goals,” Krimigis added.

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