29-11-2021 11:25 PM Jerusalem Timing

Reshuffled Greek Cabinet Takes over to Enact Unpopular Reforms

Reshuffled Greek Cabinet Takes over to Enact Unpopular Reforms

A revamped Greek government took over Saturday in an effort to enforce a third bailout accompanied by tough fiscal reforms opposed by a sizeable section of the ruling Syriza party.

A revamped Greek government took over Saturday in an effort to enforce a third bailout accompanied by tough fiscal reforms opposed by a sizeable section of the ruling Syriza party.

Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on Friday reshuffled his administration to fill the vacancies left by three cabinet members who were sacked after voting against the reforms in parliament last week.Financial crisis in Greece

Tsipras faced down a mutiny from his party in parliament last week, with over 30 of his 149 lawmakers refusing to approve the package of tax hikes, pension reform and privatizations demanded by lenders.

Greece must approve a second batch of banking and justice-related reforms on Wednesday to qualify for a three-year bailout of up to 86 billion euros ($94 billion).

Tsipras and other members of his government have publicly admitted they do not believe the reforms to which they have signed up will benefit the country.

His new spokeswoman Olga Gerovassili on Saturday repeated that the leftist government would attempt to counterbalance the "bad deal" with "compensating" measures to support the poor and the middle class.

The appointment of a TV soap opera comedian as junior labor minister has raised eyebrows but the new appointee, Pavlos Haikalis, insisted he had relevant expertise.

"I was party spokesman for social security for three years," said Haikalis, a member of the nationalist Independent Greeks party which is Syriza's junior coalition partner.

"I am taking over a very hot potato, I must handle it with love and cool it down if I can," Haikalis said.