Contoversial reshuffle in Athens
Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis reshuffled his cabinet on Monday, triggering speculation about early elections. The new interior minister is Makis Voridis, who before joining the ruling Nea Dimokratia party led several far-right movements and founded the ultranationalist Hellenic Front party. His appointment prompts mixed reactions in the press.
Time for a fresh start with new impetus
The changes will give the government new force, Ta Nea is sure:
“The PM right now has the opportunity to set the tone and to lay the groundwork for the changes that he wants, as a reshuffle for show or merely on paper is simply unacceptable. Mr. Mitsotakis' strongest weapon is his government's new, cohesive plan for exploiting funding from the EU Pandemic Recovery Fund to promote tourism and to solidify and exploit Greece's new, stronger geopolitical position. A cohesive, European government that is effectively structured can lead us to positive new realities. This will create a new impetus while preserving whatever accomplishments were achieved during the government's first 18 months in power.”
A clear shift to the right
The selection of a former right-wing extremist as the new interior minister does not bode well, web portal TVXS warns:
“The message this government reshuffle sends is not that there will be early elections, which Mitsotakis will be forced to hold in 2021 anyway as a result of the social discontent caused by the failure of government policies on all fronts. The real message lies in the conditions under which we are to be led to the elections, the policies on the basis of which they will be held, and, of course, the people with whom the prime minister wants to run. ... The placement of Makis Voridis in the politically sensitive portfolio of the Ministry of the Interior, which will also organise and carry out the elections, heralds nothing less than a clear shift by the government towards a far-right course.”