Kyriakos Mitsotakis Early Life
Kyriakos Mitsotakis, born 4 March 1968 into a bureaucratic family in Athens, long served as a member of the Greek parliament. In 2004, he ran as an MP with the ND party in the general elections. In June 2013, Mitsotakis was appointed Minister of Administrative Reform and e-Governance of Greece in Antonis Samaras’ cabinet. Following the resignation of Samaras as party leader and the disappointing defeat of the ND in the September elections in 2015, he announced his candidacy for the party’s leadership.
In January, 2016, he was elected president of the ND, portraying himself as a liberal reformer that would rejuvenate the party in terms of policies and members. A supporter of privatization, Mitsotakis backs government spending cuts and opposes to higher taxes. To support the real economy, he has underlined during his campaign that Greece needs more investments and a national development plan.
In the European Parliament election in May, his party secured 33.11 percent of votes against 23.76 percent for the ruling Radical Left SYRIZA party. In the name dispute deal with North Macedonia, the ND did not ratify the Prespes Agreement, describing it as “shameful” for the country.
“The Macedonia name dispute deal would create more problems for Greece than it would solve,” Mitsotakis has stated.
Kyriakos Mitsotakis Biography and Profile
Kyriakos Mitsotakis, a Greek Political Scientist, Economist, Prime Minister of Greece, born in Athens, 4 March 1968. A member of New Democracy, he has been its president since 2016. Mitsotakis previously was Leader of the Opposition from 2016 to 2019 and Minister of Administrative Reform from 2013 to 2015.
His father, Konstantinos Mitsotakis, was a former Greek prime minister and his older sister, Dora Bakoyannis, former mayor of Athens, also served as Greek foreign minister and culture minister.
Although he tried to distance himself from his family ties with Greece’s leading political dynasty, Kyriakos has been widely criticized that these connections have paved the way for him to join politics.
In response to the criticism, he insisted: “Judge me by my CV, not by my name.”
Kyriakos father Constantine was arrested by Greek military junta
At the time of Kyriakos’ birth, his father Constantine was arrested by Greek military junta after having been declared “persona non grata” in 1967. The Mitsotakis family managed to escape to Turkey with the help of former Turkish Foreign Minister Ihsan Sabri Caglayangil when Kyriakos was just one year old. Then the family lived in exile in Paris until they could return to Greece in 1974, following the restoration of democracy.
Constantine, the then opposition leader, harshly criticized the Panhellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK) government for the country’s ties with PKK terrorist organization. However, when Constantine Mitsotakis came to power in 1990, it was hoped that Greece’s policy on relations with PKK terrorist group would change, but no such thing happened. Abdullah Ocalan, head terrorist of PKK, was arrested under the Greek protection in the Kenyan capital Nairobi in 1999. Constantine also discriminated against the Greek Turks in Western Thrace.
“There are no Greek Turks in Western Thrace, there are Greek Muslims,” Constantine Mitsotakis said in 1990.
Greece had closed associations in Western Thrace
Greece had closed several associations in Western Thrace because they had the word “Turkish” in their names. Although the European Court of Human Rights gave verdicts against Greece regarding the issue, Athens never implemented the verdicts. Western Thrace region of Greece is home to a Muslim Turkish minority of around 150,000 people.
Kyriakos Mitsotakis served as chairman of the board of the Constanine Mitsotakis Foundation
Kyriakos Mitsotakis has served as the chairman of the board of the Constanine Mitsotakis Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving and promoting the historical archives of the former Greek Prime Minister Constantine Mitsotakis. During his studies at Harvard he received the Hoopes and Tocqueville prizes for outstanding undergraduate thesis on the subject of US foreign policy towards Greece. In January 2003 he was nominated by the World Economic Forum as a Global Leader of Tomorrow (GLT). He writes frequently for leading Greek newspapers on issues ranging from foreign policy to economic affairs.
Since 2016, Kyriakos has been the president of ND party, which was once headed by his father. Speaking after the election win at the party headquarters, Mitsotakis said he had promised to decrease the taxes and create new jobs. He said this will be achieved by working together.
“I know the difficulties but I derive my power from the people,” he said.
Mitsotakis had pledged to cut taxes, to privatize services and create new jobs. He also travelled all around the Greece during political campaign in two years. Tsipras, in a news conference, conceded defeat and said he greeted Mitsotakis in a phone call for winning the election. Tsipras said they will be a “strong main opposition” and will work to come to power again. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan became the first foreign leader to congratulate Kyriakos over phone.
Bachelor degree in Social Studies, summa cum laude, from Harvard University in 1990. MA in International Relations from Stanford University (focus on issues surrounding European integration) in 1993. MBA from Harvard Business School in 1995.
English, French, and German
Kyriakos Mitsotakis is married to Mareva Grabowski, the co-founder of a luxury clothing label, and they have three children.
Kyriakos Mitsotakis Biography and Profile