“The people have elected me, and I am accountable to those who have elected me,” Cyprus President Demetris Christofias has stressed, invited by journalists to say whether he would resign. Earlier on the members of the Council of Ministers had submitted their resignations to the President, amid increasing speculation that a government reshuffle is on the cards.

The President’s statement came in the wake of public demand for his resignation, following a deadly blast at a naval base which killed 13 people and injured dozens for which, various circles including the main opposition party, demanded his resignation.

Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou said after Thursday`s extraordinary Cabinet meeting that President Christofias informed his Ministers about his intention to proceed to a government reshuffle and asked them to hand in their resignations, which they did.

President Christofias met after the Council’s meeting with government coalition partner Democratic Party (DIKO) President Marios Garoyian. On Wednesday two Ministers, belonging to the DIKO, Ministers of Commerce, Industry and Tourism Antonis Paschalides and Health Christos Patsalides, handed in their resignations, following a party decision. In statements after today’s meeting, Garoyian said this is a time for responsibility and a time for reflection, adding that the discussion will continue. Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou said he agreed with what Garoyian had said, that they had a discussion in a constructive climate and that discussions will continue.

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