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Costas Caramanlis

Costas Caramanlis

Costas Caramanlis (in Greek Kostas or Konstantinos Alexandrou Karamanlis, Κωστας or Κωνσταντινος Καραμανλης) (born September 14 1956) became Prime Minister of Greece on March 10 2004 following his party's victory in the March 7 parliamentary elections. He is the leader of the conservative New Democracy party.

Caramanlis, a nephew of the former President of the Hellenic Republic Constantine Caramanlis, was born in Athens and studied at Athens University's Law School and at the private Deree College, continuing with postgraduate studies in the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy Tufts University in the United States, where he gained a master's degree and a doctorate in political sciences, international relations and diplomatic history.

Caramanlis was a member of New Democracy's youth wing, ONNED, and served in ONNED's and New Democracy's organisational and ideological sectors from 1974 to 1979 and from 1984 to 1989. He also practised law between 1984 and 1989 and taught political science, diplomatic history and business law at Deree College. He is the author of Eleftherios Venizelos and Greece's Foreign Relations 1928–32. He has also edited and prefaced various historical publications.

Caramanlis was elected a New Democracy deputy for Thessaloniki in 1989, but in 2004 he was elected for Larissa. He was elected party leader in 1997 following New Democracy's defeat in the 1996 election. He narrowly failed to defeat the ruling Panhellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK) at the 2000 elections.

Caramanlis is the youngest ever Greek Prime Minister, and the first born after World War II. He married Natasa Pazaïti in 1998 and they have two children (a boy and a girl who are twins), born in 2003.

Preceded by:
Costas Simitis
Prime Minister of Greece
Succeeded by:
current incumbent

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