President of Greece

The President of the Hellenic Republic (Greek: Πρόεδρος της Ελληνικής Δημοκρατίας, Próedros ti̱s Elli̱nikí̱s Di̱mokratías), colloquially referred to in English as the President of Greece, is the head of state of Greece. The President is elected by the Hellenic Parliament, and his role is mostly ceremonial since the 1986 constitutional reform. The office was formally established by the Constitution of Greece in 1975, but has antecedents in the Second Hellenic Republic of 1924–1935 and the republic established by the Greek military junta in 1973–1974. The incumbent, since 2015, is Prokopis Pavlopoulos, serving his first term in office.

President of the Hellenic Republic
Πρόεδρος της Ελληνικής Δημοκρατίας
Flag of the President of Greece
Prokopis Pavlopoulos 2016-01-15
Prokopis Pavlopoulos

since 13 March 2015
StyleHis Excellency
ResidencePresidential Mansion, Athens
AppointerHellenic Parliament
Term lengthFive years
renewable once
Constituting instrumentConstitution of Greece
Inaugural holderIoannis Kapodistrias (as Governor)
Pavlos Kountouriotis (Second Republic)
Georgios Papadopoulos (Military junta)
Michail Stasinopoulos (Third Republic)
Formation25 March 1924
18 December 1974
Salary€138,732 annually[1]


The president is the nominal commander-in-chief of the Greek Armed Forces and occupies the first place in the country's order of precedence. Although the Greek Constitution of 1974 vested him with considerable powers on paper, in practice the president took a largely ceremonial role; the Prime Minister of Greece is the active chief executive of the Greek government and the country's leading political figure. The president's role was formally brought into line with actual practice by the 1986 constitutional amendment, which reduced his official powers.


According to Article 32 the Greek Constitution, the President is elected for a five-year term by the Hellenic Parliament in a special session at least a month before the incumbent's term expires. Voting takes place in two phases, each maximally of three ballots, separated by no more than five days.[2]

The first and second ballots require a supermajority of 200 out of the 300-strong body, dropping to 180 on the third. In the event of a non-election even after the third ballot, the parliament is to be dissolved and a snap election to be called within ten days. After the new parliament convenes, the second phase begins, with the required majority at 180 votes in the fourth ballot and a simple majority of 151 votes in the fifth ballot. The sixth and last ballot is then contested between the two candidates with the most votes and decided by a relative majority.[2]

Oath of office

Before taking office, the President must recite an oath before Parliament:

"I swear in the name of the Holy, Consubstantial and Indivisible Trinity to safeguard the Constitution and the laws, to ensure their faithful observance, to defend the national independence and territorial integrity of the Country, to protect the rights and liberties of the Greeks and to serve the general interest and the progress of the Greek People."[2]

Official residence

Presidential Mansion in Athens
The Presidential Mansion in Athens

The official residence of the President of Greece is the Presidential Mansion, formerly the New Royal Palace, in central Athens.


The current Third Hellenic Republic (Greek: Γʹ Ελληνική Δημοκρατία) was established in 1974 during the period of metapolitefsi, after the end of the Regime of the Colonels which had controlled Greece since the coup d'état of 21 April 1967.

On 1 June 1973 the then leader of the military junta and regent for the exiled King Constantine II, Georgios Papadopoulos, abolished the Greek monarchy and proclaimed himself President of the Republic. A staged referendum on 29 July 1973 confirmed the regime change, and passed a new constitution which established a presidential republic. This attempt at controlled democratization was ended by Brigadier Dimitrios Ioannidis' overthrow of Papadopoulos in November 1973. The republic and its institutions were formally maintained, but was nothing more than a façade for the military regime. Lt. General Phaedon Gizikis was appointed President of the Republic, but power was in the hands of Ioannidis, who ruled behind the scenes.

After the fall of the junta and the return to civilian rule under Konstantinos Karamanlis in August 1974, the legal and constitutional acts of the military regime were deemed invalid, and a new referendum was held on 8 December 1974, which confirmed the abolition of the monarchy. In the interim, Gizikis, remained in office as President. After the plebiscite, he was succeeded by the first elected President, Michail Stasinopoulos.

A new constitution, promulgated on 11 June 1975, declared Greece a presidential parliamentary democracy (or republic – the Greek δημοκρατία can be translated both ways). This constitution, revised in 1985, 2001, and 2008, is still in force today.

List of presidents of the Third Republic

President Term of office Political party
Portrait Name Took office Left office Time in office
1 Michail Stasinopoulos
Μιχαήλ Στασινόπουλος
18 December 1974 19 July 1975 213 days New Democracy
Writer and jurist, former President of the Council of State. Supported by New Democracy, he was elected unopposed by the ND-dominated parliament resulting from the 17 November 1974 election and following the definitive abolition of the Greek monarchy in the 8 December 1974 referendum, with 206 votes on the first ballot.
2 Konstantinos Tsatsos Konstantinos Tsatsos
Κωνσταντίνος Τσάτσος
19 July 1975 10 May 1980 4 years, 296 days New Democracy
Jurist and multiple cabinet minister with the National Radical Union and New Democracy. Elected by the 1974 Parliament on the first ballot with 210 votes against Panagiotis Kanellopoulos.
3 KaramanlisNatsinasAgora crop Konstantinos Karamanlis
Κωνσταντίνος Γ. Καραμανλής
10 May 1980 10 March 1985
4 years, 304 days New Democracy
Prime Minister as leader of the National Radical Union in 1955–1963 and again as leader of New Democracy since 1974. Supported by ND, KODISO and KKE Interior, he was elected by the ND-dominated 1977 parliament on the third ballot with 183 votes against seven other candidates put forward by minor parties. Resigned before the end of his term due to his falling out with Andreas Papandreou and PASOK's decision not to support him for a second term in 1985.
Ioannis Alevras Ioannis Alevras
Ιωάννης Αλευράς
10 March 1985 30 March 1985 20 days PASOK
PASOK MP and Speaker of Parliament, he substituted for Karamanlis following his early resignation.
4 Christos Sartzetakis (1989) cropped Christos Sartzetakis
Χρήστος Σαρτζετάκης (born 1929)
30 March 1985 4 May 1990 5 years, 35 days Independent
Jurist, famous for his role in investigating the Lambrakis assassination. He was supported by PASOK and KKE, and was elected unopposed by the PASOK-dominated 1981 Parliament on the third ballot with 180 votes.
(3) KaramanlisNatsinasAgora crop Konstantinos Karamanlis
Κωνσταντίνος Γ. Καραμανλής
5 May 1990 10 March 1995 4 years, 310 days New Democracy
The November 1989 Parliament failed to elect a President after three ballots, with the votes of PASOK being split between incumbent Christos Sartzetakis and Ioannis Alevras, leading to its dissolution and snap elections. Karamanlis did not present himself as a candidate during the first three ballots, but was put forward by New Democracy after the elections. He was elected by the new 1990 Parliament on the fifth ballot with 153 votes, opposed by PASOK-sponsored Ioannis Alevras and Konstantinos Despotopoulos (Synaspismos).
5 Konstantinos Stefanopoulos 2000 Konstantinos Stephanopoulos
Κωνσταντίνος Στεφανόπουλος
10 March 1995 12 March 2005 10 years, 2 days Independent
National Radical Union and New Democracy MP and cabinet minister, after 1985 leader of the breakaway Democratic Renewal party. Supported by PASOK and Political Spring, he was elected by the PASOK-dominated 1993 Parliament on the third ballot with 181 votes, against ND's candidate Athanasios Tsaldaris. His re-election in 2000 was by the PASOK-dominated 1996 Parliament, as a joint candidate of PASOK and ND, standing against Synaspismos' Leonidas Kyrkos.
6 Karolos Papoulias Karolos Papoulias
Κάρολος Παπούλιας
(born 1929)
12 March 2005 13 March 2015 10 years, 1 day PASOK
PASOK MP and multiple cabinet minister. He was elected unopposed for his first term by the New Democracy-dominated 2004 Parliament as a joint candidate of ND and PASOK on the first ballot with 279 votes. Re-elected unopposed for a second term in 2010 by the PASOK-dominated 2009 Parliament as a joint candidate of PASOK, ND and LAOS on the first ballot with 266 votes.
7 Prokopis Pavlopoulos 2016-01-15 Prokopis Pavlopoulos
Προκόπης Παυλόπουλος
(born 1950)
13 March 2015 Incumbent 4 years, 41 days New Democracy
New Democracy MP and multiple cabinet minister. The previous ND-PASOK coalition failed to elect Stavros Dimas on the first three rounds, leading to new elections, which were won by SYRIZA. Supported by SYRIZA, ANEL and ND, Pavlopoulos was elected by the new 2015 Parliament on the fourth ballot with 233 votes, opposed by the candidate of The River and PASOK Nikos Alivizatos.

Living former Presidents

There are two living former Greek Presidents:

Christos Sartzetakis (1989) cropped
Christos Sartzetakis
6 April 1929 (age 90)
Karolos Papoulias
Karolos Papoulias
4 June 1929 (age 89)

See also


  1. ^ Κούρεμα 50% στο μισθό του Προέδρου της Δημοκρατίας (in Greek). 14 September 2012.
  2. ^ a b c "President: Election of the President". Presidency of the Hellenic Republic. Retrieved 17 February 2015.
1926 Greek presidential election

Presidential elections were held in Greece between 4 and 11 April 1926. At the time the country was a dictatorship under Theodoros Pangalos, who was one of the two candidates. The other, Konstantinos Demertzis, withdrew from the contest before election day, but remained on the ballot paper. Pangalos received 93.3% of the vote. However, he was removed from office on 22 August following a counter-coup and was replaced by Pavlos Kountouriotis. It remains the only occasion on which the President of Greece has been elected by the public.

Christos Sartzetakis

Christos Sartzetakis (Greek: Χρήστος Σαρτζετάκης; born 6 April 1929) is a Greek jurist and former supreme justice of the Court of Cassation, who served as the President of Greece from 1985 to 1990.

Drakeia massacre

The Drakeia massacre (Greek: Η σφαγή της Δράκειας) refers to the mass execution of 118 men by SS soldiers in the village of Drakeia, located on Mount Pelion, in Thessaly, on 18 December 1943. Out of the 350 houses, 58 were destroyed. It was part of the multiple Nazi reprisals against the Greek Resistance in occupied Greece. A wake in memory of the victims is held in the area every year, in the presence of members of the Greek Parliament and the President of Greece.

Greece–Latvia relations

Greek-Latvian relations are the bilateral relations between Greece and Latvia. Both countries are full members of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, of NATO and the European Union. The Latvian embassy in Athens was established in 1998. Latvia also has two honorary consulates in Piraeus and in Thessaloniki. The Greek embassy in Riga was opened in January 2005.

Greece–Ukraine relations

The Greek-Ukrainian relations are the relations between Greece and Ukraine.

Greece recognized Ukraine on December 31, 1991. Both countries established diplomatic relations in 1992. Greece opened an embassy in Kiev in 1993, general-consulates were set up in Mariupol and Odessa. Ukraine has opened an embassy in Athens and since April 2004 a general-consulate in Thessaloniki.

Both countries are full members of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe and of the Organization of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation. There is a large Greek community living in Ukraine (mostly in the southern and eastern regions of the nation). Ukraine was first settled by the Greeks as early as 500 B.C. The Ukrainian city of Odessa (among others) was founded by ancient Greek colonists.

Greek order of precedence

The order of precedence of Greece is fixed by the Decree 52749/2006 of the Minister of the Interior, and prescribes the protocollary hierarchy of the Greek political leadership. The President, as head of state, is first, and the Prime Minister, as head of government, is second.

President of Greece (Prokopis Pavlopoulos)

Prime Minister of Greece (Alexis Tsipras)

Speaker of the Hellenic Parliament (Nikos Voutsis)

Archbishop of Athens and All Greece (Ieronymos II)

Leader of the Official Opposition (Kyriakos Mitsotakis)

Former President(s) of Greece (Christos Sartzetakis, Karolos Papoulias)

Vice President(s) of the Government (Yannis Dragasakis)

Ioannis Alevras

Ioannis Alevras (Greek: Ιωάννης Αλευράς, 1912 – 6 April 1995) was a Greek Panhellenic Socialist Movement politician and Speaker of the Hellenic Parliament, who served as acting President of Greece in March 1985.

Karolos Papoulias

Karolos Papoulias (Greek: Κάρολος Παπούλιας [ˈkarolos paˈpuʎas]; born 4 June 1929) is a Greek politician who was the President of Greece from 2005 to 2015. He was previously the Minister for Foreign Affairs from 1985 to 1989 and from 1993 to 1996.


Konstantinos or Constantinos (Κωνσταντῖνος, Kōnstantînos) is a Greek male given name.

Konstantinos, occultist

Konstantinos "Kosta" Barbarouses, New Zealand footballer

Konstantinos Chalkias, Greek footballer

Konstadinos Gatsioudis, Greek athlete (javelin)

Konstantinos Karamanlis (1907–1998), former Prime Minister and President of Greece

Konstantinos Kenteris, Greek athlete (sprinter) and Olympic gold medalist

Konstantinos Koukodimos, former Greek athlete and politician

Konstantinos Logothetopoulos, former Prime Minister of Greece

Kostas Mitroglou, Greek footballer

Konstantinos Mitsotakis (1918–2017), former Prime Minister of Greece

Konstantinos Paparrigopoulos (1815–1891), Greek historian

Konstantinos Simitis (born 1936), former Prime Minister of Greece

Konstantinos Stephanopoulos (1926–2016), former President of Greece

Konstantinos Tsaldaris, Greek politician

Konstantinos Tsatsos (1899–1987), former President of Greece

Konstantinos Tsiklitiras (1888–1913), Greek athlete and Olympic gold medalist

Konstadinos Zalagitis, Greek athlete (triple jump)

Konstantinos Stephanopoulos

Konstantinos "Kostis" Stephanopoulos (Greek: Κωνσταντίνος (Κωστής) Στεφανόπουλος, 15 August 1926 – 20 Νovember 2016) was a Greek conservative politician who served two consecutive terms as the President of Greece, from 1995 to 2005.


Kountouriotika (Greek: Κουντουριώτικα pronounced [kunduˈɾʝotika]) is a small neighborhood of Athens, Greece, named after the admiral and later President of Greece Pavlos Kountouriotis. It is located within Ampelokipoi.

Life imprisonment in Greece

Life imprisonment is legal under the Greek penal code, and is the most severe punishment available under the law. It can be imposed for multiple murders, mass murder, treason, terrorism, aircraft hijacking, and aggravated hostage taking. Such life sentence is mandatory for multiple murders and any act of terrorism, including aircraft hijacking. For a single life sentence, an inmate can become eligible for parole after serving 16 years. For those who receive multiple life sentences, parole eligibility can begin after 20 years. Parole is not mandatory, and if rejected, the inmate can reapply every 2 years. There are an average of 25 life sentences per year.

The President of Greece can pardon the inmate anytime. For those under the age of 18, the maximum sentence is 20 years' imprisonment.

List of Greek regents

This is a list of Greek regents (Greek: αντιβασιλείς, sing. αντιβασιλεύς), a regent, from the Latin regens "one who reigns", is a person selected to act as head of state (ruling or not) because the ruler is a minor, not present, or debilitated.

Mesovouno massacres

The Mesovouno massacre (Greek: Η σφαγή του Μεσόβουνου) refers to two massacres perpetrated by members of the Wehrmacht in the village of Mesovouno in Ptolemaida, Greece, during the Axis occupation of Greece, carried out on 23 October 1941 and 22 April 1944.On 23 October 1941, the Wehrmacht soldiers gathered all men aged 16-69 years old, killed them with machine guns and set the houses on fire. In 1944 the village was razed by Nazi troops two days before the massacre of the village Pyrgoi in Ptolemaida. A total of 268 civilians were killed. In the 1941 massacre, Mesovouno was part of a series of mass executions by the Nazis that took place from 17 to 28 of October, the rest being the executions of the inhabitants of the villages Kalokastro and Kerdylia in Serres, of Kleisto, Kidonia and Ambelofyto in Kilkis.There are annual wakes in the village in memory of the victims, in which members of the Greek Parliament and the President of Greece officially participate.

Michail Stasinopoulos

Michail Stasinopoulos (Greek: Μιχαήλ Στασινόπουλος; 27 July 1903 – 31 October 2002) was a Greek jurist. He served as President of Greece

between 18 December 1974 and 19 July 1975.

Phaedon Gizikis

Phaedon Gizikis (Greek: Φαίδων Γκιζίκης [ˈfeðon ɟiˈzicis]; 16 June 1917 – 27 July 1999) was a Greek army general, and the second and last President of Greece under The Junta, from 1973 to 1974.

Prokopis Pavlopoulos

Prokopios Pavlopoulos, GColIH (Greek: Προκόπιος Παυλόπουλος, pronounced [proˈkopios pavˈlopulos]; born 10 July 1950), commonly shortened to Prokopis (Προκόπης), is the current President of Greece, in office since 2015. A lawyer, university professor and politician, he was Minister for the Interior from 2004 to 2009.

On 18 February 2015, Pavlopoulos was elected by the Hellenic Parliament as President of Greece, with 233 votes in favour.

Stavros Dimas

Stavros Dimas (Greek: Σταύρος Δήμας, Greek pronunciation: [ˈstavros ˈðimas]; born 30 April 1941) is a Greek politician who was European Commissioner for the Environment from 2004 to 2009. From November 2011 to May 2012, he served in the government of Greece as Minister for Foreign Affairs. The New Democracy–PASOK coalition government nominated him for the post of President of Greece in December 2014, but he failed to achieve the necessary votes, forcing the dissolution of parliament.

Z (1969 film)

Z is a 1969 Algerian-French epic political thriller film directed by Costa-Gavras, with a screenplay by Gavras and Jorge Semprún, based on the 1966 novel of the same name by Vassilis Vassilikos. The film presents a thinly fictionalized account of the events surrounding the assassination of democratic Greek politician Grigoris Lambrakis in 1963. With its satirical view of Greek politics, its dark sense of humor, and its downbeat ending, the film captures the outrage about the military dictatorship that ruled Greece at the time of its making.

The film stars Jean-Louis Trintignant as the investigating magistrate (an analogue of Christos Sartzetakis who later served as president of Greece from 1985 to 1990). International stars Yves Montand and Irene Papas also appear, but despite their star billing have very little screen time. Jacques Perrin, who co-produced, plays a key role as a photojournalist. The film's title refers to a popular Greek protest slogan (Greek: Ζει, IPA: [ˈzi]) meaning "he lives," in reference to Lambrakis.

The film had a total of 3,952,913 admissions in France and was the 4th highest grossing film of the year. It was also the 12th highest grossing film of 1969 in the U.S. Z is also the first film—and one of only a handful—to be nominated for both the Academy Awards for Best Picture and Best Foreign Language Film. It won the latter, as well as the Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival, the BAFTA Award for Best Film Music, and the Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign-Language Foreign Film; at the 27th Golden Globe Awards, the producers of Z refused the award to protest against the film's exclusion from the Best Motion Picture - Drama category.

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