The minister in charge of Greece’s security services announced Monday his intention to resign from the government so he can run for the leadership of the country’s socialist party.
Christos Papoutsis, 59, a former European commissioner, said he submitted his resignation to Prime Minister Lucas Papademos, who was expected to accept it in the coming days.
Papoutsis runs the Citizen Protection Ministry which oversees Greece’s security services, including its fire departments, coast guard and police.
But he is considered an unlikely choice to head the Pasok party, with Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos viewed as the favorite.
Papoutsis was roundly criticized after police failed to contain urban violence and rioting on February 12 as demonstrators protested at the latest round of budget cuts.