Prime Minister George Papandreou on Friday expressed his condolences to the family of former party leader Miltiades Evert, who died on Wednesday at the age of 72 after a prolonged bout of ill health. Evert had served as president of main opposition New Democracy in the 1990s and stepped down after his party's electoral defeat to PASOK.

Speaking in Parliament, Papandreou stressed that Evert had left his stamp on political life in the country through his presence and efforts.The prime minister has also decided that the funeral for Evert will be held at public expense. The funeral is scheduled to take place on Saturday at Athens' first cemetery.