New Democracy

Ex-cabinet secretary Baltakos to form his own party

Former cabinet secretary Panayiotis Baltakos, ousted from government earlier this year when it was revealed he had held a secret meeting with Golden Dawn, is to form his own party.

Baltakos, who had been one of Prime Minister Antonis Samaras’s closest aides, said that the new party would be called Rizes (Roots).

To Potami chief meets PM in push to change Greek electoral law

Stavros Theodorakis, leader of the centrist To Potami party, will meet with conservative Prime Minister Antonis Samaras on Wednesday at 6 p.m.

It will be the first official meeting between the two leaders. Scheduled talks between the two were cancelled in October after Samaras called for a confidence vote.

New defense and development ministers to be sworn in

Greece’s new defense and development ministers are due to be sworn in on Monday after a mini reshuffle caused by the departure of Dimitris Avramopoulos from his post at the Defense Ministry to become the EU's Home Affairs and Migration commissioner.

Nikos Dendias, 55, leaves the Development Ministry to replace Avramopoulos.

Obvious reforms

The two parties comprising the coalition government, conservative New Democracy and socialist PASOK, are once again faced with a number of crucial decisions.

Changes in the pay structure of public servants as well as the laws governing the operations of trade unions are reforms that PASOK obviously can and should support.

Coalition leaders prepare for troika amid sour mood

A dispute between New Democracy and PASOK over civil servants’ salaries continued Tuesday, underlining the big task facing Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and Deputy Prime Minister Evangelos Venizelos as they prepare to meet Wednesday to discuss the government’s strategy ahead of the troika’s return to Athens.