Greece's newly formed coalition government has experienced its first bump as would-be Finance Minister Vasilis Rapanos has resigned. According to the Athens News, Rapanos' health issues heavily influenced his decision. Rapanos was not present when other members of the new government were sworn in Thursday.
* Rapanos was hospitalized Friday after suffering from nausea and dizziness, according to CNNMoney. He was also said to be suffering from abdominal pain.
* Rapanos' medical situation arose a day before Prime Minister Antonis Samaras underwent surgery on one of his eyes.
* Chief among Rapanos' first duties was to be the renegotiation of austerity plans Greece had agreed to in return for 130 billion euros in bailout funds from the International Monetary Fund and the rest of the eurozone earlier this year.
* Rapanos will likely retain his position as head of the National Bank of Greece.
* Ekathimerini reported Rapanos also had some reservations about Cabinet appointments that Samaras made, including the decision not to follow Rapanos' recommendations in appointing personnel.
* Rapanos also reportedly drew issue with the scope and stipulations of the mandates laid out in the new government's policy plan, which was unveiled Saturday.
* Samaras is due to meet with the leaders of the other parties of the coalition government, the PASOK and Democratic Left, regarding replacements for Rapanos. Current Finance Minister George Zanias might remain in the post.
* While Germany has said Greece should honor the promises it made in return for the bailout funds, its government has also indicated it would wait until the three leaders of the coalition government issued a report to the eurozone detailing Greece's financial and economic situation in regard to the austerity plan before making any final decisions, according to Reuters.
Vanessa Evans is a musician, traveler, and freelance writer with an interest in European studies and events.
- Politics & Government
- coalition government
- Antonis Samaras