At the end of last week, both the newly elected Prime Minister, Antonis Samaras, and his finance minister, Vasillis Rapanos, were reported to have such serious health problems that neither would be able to attend this week’s summit in Bruxelles at which Greece’s crisis is the top issue.
Samaras underwent eye surgery for a detached retina on Monday and doctors have told him that he cannot leave his house, though he can accept visitors.
Rapanos, the head of the National Bank of Greece, collapsed last Friday and was hospitalized complaining of “acute abdominal pain and dizziness.” After undergoing a colonoscopy and other tests, Rapanos resigned by early evening or, at any rate, withdrew from the position as he had not yet been sworn into it. The result is, as you will not be surprised to hear, “confusion over the country’s plans on how it will ask the EU to renegotiate its bailout conditions.”
Greek President Karolos Papoulias will be heading a delegation to attend the EU summit meeting due to the prime minister and the finance minister, whoever that will turn out to be, not being able to attend. According to the Ta Nea newspaper, Democratic left leader Fotis Kouvelis and Pasok Socialist leader Evangelos Venizelos, who was the finance minister when Greece received its second rescue package of €130 billion, had been thought likely to be part of the delegation but will not be.
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