Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides said on Wednesday that he was retiring from politics.
In statements to journalists at the presidential palace on the sidelines of an ambassadorial ceremony, he said: “I can confirm that yesterday I had a meeting with the President of the Republic where I announced to him and we agreed that the cycle of my presence in political life had come to close.”
“I want to retire. I thanked him warmly for our cooperation for five years, for the work that we produced, and I would like to announce it officially and thank everyone.”
Reports for the past two days insist that government spokesman Nicos Christodoulides would be replacing Kasoulides, who followed the pragmatic the line drawn by late former president Glafkos Clerides.
Cybc reported later on Wednesday that Finance Minister Harris Georgiades had met President Nicos Anastasiades earlier in the day and had told the president he believed his time at the finance ministry had come to a close. However, the report said he had made it clear this did not mean he was retiring from political life.
Early reports suggested Georgiades also wanted the foreign affairs portfolio but it was unclear whether he would be remaining in the cabinet in a different capacity.
Some also suggested he may have his sights on the leadership of ruling Disy. Disy elections are due sometime this year. Interior Minister Constantinos Petrides could be the one replacing Georgiades.
The publicly popular Giorgos Pamborides is also leaving the health ministry, a big loss for the president. The strong-willed Pamborides fought tooth and nail to push through the national health scheme law last year and observers fear the scheme will never be implemented if the next minister is not as tough.
There is also speculation that Justice Minister Ionas Nicolaou would be moving to the post of deputy attorney-general but there may be a delay fearing reaction from Attorney-general Costas Clerides who may not want another political appointment at the post.