Pangalos announces retirement from politics

Deputy Prime Minister Theodoros Pangalos told state TV channel NET on Saturday that he is not going to be a candidate for the upcoming early elections, thereby retiring from politics. Pangalos, 73, who has served as a parliamentary deputy continuously since 1981, has repeatedly been at the receiving end of attacks by citizens owing to controversial statements he has made in his long career.

He has also served in many top ministerial posts, heading the Foreign Ministry in 1999 during the notorious crisis with Kurdish guerilla leader Abdullah Ocalan.

"The political system is corrupt, which is why I am withdrawing,» said Pangalos.

Speaking on NET he also predicted that neither his party, PASOK, nor New Democracy, which is leading in the polls, will secure an outright majority, but also that the two main parties could not form a coalition government that would overcome the country's problems.

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