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Cypriot president to reshuffle cabinet by March 15

English.news.cn   2014-02-28 19:56:18

NICOSIA, Feb. 28 (Xinhua) -- Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades announced Friday that he will reshuffle his 11-member cabinet by March 15, following the exit of a junior coalition partner from the government.

A government spokesman said all 11 ministers submitted their resignation to the president at an extraordinary meeting of the cabinet on Friday.

This came after the Democratic Party (DIKO) decided Thursday to quit the government in disagreement over the president's political choices in entering negotiations for a Cyprus settlement.

DIKO ordered its four ministers and some other officials in public administration posts to resign.

Anastasiades immediately accepted the resignation of officials in lower-level posts but asked all ministers to stay in their posts until March 15.

DIKO stayed in the coalition just under a year but its central committee decided by a slim majority on Thursday to quit.

The party claimed that a document, which served as the basis for the resumption of negotiations between Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots for the island's reunification, made too many concessions to the Turkish Cypriot's side.

Greek and Turkish Cypriots have been living in separate parts of the eastern Mediterranean island after Turkey occupied its northern part in 1974, in response to a coup of Greek army officers.

Cypriot Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides hinted that he will keep his ministry after the reshuffle because negotiations on the Cyprus problem are entering a critical stage.

"It has always been my wish to serve on the European Commission but my duty dictates to stand by the side of the president, if he so wishes," Kasoulides said after the cabinet meeting.

Editor: Fu Peng
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