Minister Varvitsiotis resigns after scandal

Tue, 12 Sep 2023 9:28 GMT
Minister Miltiadis Varvitsiotis resigned following the death of a 36-year-old passenger who was pushed overboard by an attendant at the Port of Piraeus.
Minister Varvitsiotis resigns after scandal

Greek Minister of Maritime and Island Policy Miltiadis Varvitsiotis announced his resignation today following the death of a 36-year-old passenger who boarded the ferry at the last moment in Piraeus harbour and was pushed into the sea by an official who tried to prevent him.

While Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis is reported to have accepted the resignation of the Greek Minister, Varvitsiotis made the following statements on his social media account:

"The death of Antonis Kargiotis has shocked us all. It is unbelievable that a Greek sailor would abandon an unfortunate young man by pushing him overboard, in violation of centuries-old rules to protect human life at sea. I hope that Greek justice will bring the real perpetrators to justice. But in recent days, I have been the target of an increasingly toxic attack. A misunderstood statement of mine has caused outrage. I sincerely apologise. I did not equate the victim and the perpetrators. I did not remove the responsibility that the ship company did not assume. I have been in politics for many years with the feeling of contributing to society and my country. I have served my people with principles and values. I have learnt to take responsibility instead of running away in difficult times. According to some, I am a good politician, according to others I am not. However, I do not accept to be stoned as a human being. My political path and personal reputation require me not to remain in office. I have therefore submitted my resignation to the Prime Minister."

It was reported that Varvitsiotis was replaced by Christos Stilianidis, who was elected as a contingent MP in the last elections, by the decision of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis.

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