- Karolos Papoulias
name = Karolos Papoulias
President of Greece
12 March 2005
order2 = Minister for Foreign Affairs
26 July 1985
02 July 1989
13 October 1993
02 January 1996
birth_date = birth date and age|1929|06|04|df=y
spouse = Maria Panou "May" Papoulia
residence = Presidential Palace (official)
Panhellenic Socialist MovementDr. Karolos Papoulias ( _el. Κάρολος Παπούλιας, IPA2|ˈkaro̞ˌlo̞s paˈpuʎas) (born June 4, 1929) is the current President of the Hellenic Republic (Greece). He is a former government minister and member of parliament. His first name is the Greek equivalent of Carl/ Charles.
Private life and family
Born in the city of
Ioannina, Papoulias is the son of Major GeneralGregorios Papoulias. He studied lawat the University of Athensand the University of Munich, has a doctorate in private international law from the University of Cologne, and is an associate of the Munich Institute for Southeast Europe. Apart from his native Greek, he also speaks French, German and Italian. A former pole-vault and volley ball champion, Papoulias has been chairman of the National Sports Association since 1985. He is also a founding member and until recently president of the Association for the Greek Linguistic Heritage.
Karolos Papoulias is married to Maria Panou and has three daughters.
Resistance against the Nazis and the Junta
Papoulias was active in the resistance against the occupation forces during
World War II.
The 1967 military coup found him in
West Germany. He was among the founders of the Socialist Democratic Unionwhich organized and mobilized Greeks working and studying in Western Europe against the colonel's junta. He was also a founding member of the first trade union resistance organization and broadcast regularly from Deutsche Welleradio.
Role in PASOK, parliamentary and government offices
Papulias was a founding member of the
Panhellenic Socialist Movement(PASOK) and a close associate of its leader Andreas Papandreou. Since December 1974 he was continually elected to the PASOK Central Committee. He was also member of the Coordination Council, the Executive Bureau and the Political Secretariat, as well as Secretary of the PASOK International Re1ations Committee from April 1975 to 1985. For a number of years he was also a member of the Coordinating Committee of the Socialist and Progressive Parties of the Mediterranean.
He was first elected to Parliament in 1977 for
Ioannina, and held his seat continuously through the subsequent legislative elections until his 2004 election as President of the Republic. He held several high offices during the PASOK cabinets:
* Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs, from
October 21, 1981to February 8, 1984.
* Alternate Minister for Foreign Affairs, from
February 8, 1984to 5 June, 1985and again from 5 June, 1985to July 26, 1985.
* Minister for Foreign Affairs, from
July 26, 1985to July 2, 1989.
* Alternate Minister for National Defence, from
November 23, 1989to February 13, 1990in the ecumenical government of Xenophon Zolotas.
* Minister for Foreign Affairs, from
October 13, 1993to January 22, 1996.
Costas Simitisadministration he was for a number of years Chairman of the Standing Committee on Defence and Foreign Affairs of the Hellenic Parliament.
Election to the Presidency
December 12, 2004, Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis, leader of the governing New Democracy party, and George Papandreou, leader of the PASOKopposition, nominated Papoulias as for the position of President, who is chosen by the Parliament. On February 8, 2005, he was elected by an overwhelming parliamentary majority of 279 (out of 300) votes to serve a five-year term. He was sworn in as the seventh President of the Third Hellenic Republic on March 12, 2005, succeeding Konstantinos Stephanopoulos.
Papoulias as Foreign Minister
During his long tenure in the Foreign Ministry, he identified himself with a foreign policy that was clearsighted and comprehensive. In the 1980s he played a key role in trying to bring about a solution to the
Israeli-Palestinian conflict. This culminated in the successful mediation for the safe departure of the trapped Palestinian resistance fighters and Yassir Arafathimself from Lebanonon board Greek vessels in 1983.
He paid particular attention to the creation of sound relations with the
Arab worldand achieved, among other things, the normalisation of relations between Greece and Egyptand the establishment of the tripartite cooperation of Iran, Armeniaand Greece. He held talks with a total of 12 Turkish Foreign Ministers and was firmly committed to the continuous and difficult effort to normalize Greco-Turkish relations. This culminated in the signing of the Papoulias-Yılmaz memorandumin 1988.
He supported Turkey's European aspirations conditional on their respect for
international lawand European Unionvalues.
In the period 1993-1996 and particularly at the crucial Essen Summit he played an important role in starting accession talks between the
Republic of Cyprusand the European Union.
As president-in-office of the European Union and member of the contact group for the
former Yugoslavia, together with Warren Christopher, Klaus Kinkel, Alain Juppé, Andrei Kozyrevand Hans van den Broek, he spared no effort to bring about a resolution of the crisis in Bosnia and Herzegovina. He signed the Interim Agreement with the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), aiming at the establishment of better relations between the two countries. He has always kept channels of communication open with all Balkan leaders and has repeatedly mediated on behalf of the EU.
He was very interested in relations between Greece and the Balkan states and it was upon his initiative that the first meeting of the Foreign Ministers of the Balkans was organized in
Belgradein 1988. There, he began talks with Bulgariaand the then Soviet Unionon the Burgas-Alexandroupolis oil pipeline.
He was responsible for the signing of the protocol of mutual civil and military assistance with Bulgaria in the 1980s. He restored friendly and neighbourly relations with
Albaniaby ending the state of war between the two countries.
Karolos Papoulias has always been very supportive of any step towards détente, peace and disarmament e.g. the "Initiative of the Six" for peace and disarmament, the participation of Greece in the
Conference on Disarmament and Peace in Europeand in the Conference for the Abolition of Chemical Weapons, his proposals to create a nuclear-free zone in the Balkans and the promotion of the idea of making the Mediterraneana sea of peace and cooperation. The JANNINA 1 tripartite cooperation conference, between Greece, Bulgaria and Romania, was his idea and he was a strong supporter of the Black Sea Conference, which he also chaired.With his visit to Washingtonin 1985 and the return visit of Secretary of State George Shultz, he made an important contribution to the redefining and improvement of Greek-American relations which had gone through a delicate phase during the previous years.
* [http://www.presidency.gr/ Presidency of Greece]
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