Opposition Snubs Cyprus President

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NICOSIA, Cyprus, Aug. 6 (UPI) — Cypriot President Demetris Christofias tried to revitalize his government and reach out to the opposition but was left with a new Cabinet much like the old one.

Kikis Kazamias, a former member of the European Court of Auditors, was added to the Cabinet as finance minister Friday, The New York Times reported. That was the most important change at a time of economic crisis.

The opposition snubbed Christofias’ overtures.

“Constitutionally, the government is viable but practically it can’t rule, it will need to bargain with five opposition parties on each piece of legislation it brings to Parliament,” said Victor Roudometof, a sociologist at the University of Cyprus. “He can’t do it on his own — it’s mission impossible.”

Christofias’ standing with voters has plunged. Cyprus’ economic future has been compromised by the $7.1 billion in Greek debt held by its banks. In addition, an explosion at a munitions dump gutted a nuclear plant.

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