Greek budget minister burgled ahead of EU-IMF audit

Christos Staikouras delivers his speech during an Economist conference in Athens, on Tuesday, July 3, 2012. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)

ATHENS: Burglars broke into the office of Greece's new deputy finance minister, making off with his passport and documents ahead of a crucial audit by EU-IMF creditors, a police source said Wednesday.

The break-in at the general accounting office occurred several days ago but was initially kept under wraps, the police source told AFP.

The deputy minister targeted, Christos Staikouras, is the official in charge of budget monitoring in the new conservative-led coalition government which emerged after an election last month.

The incident is the latest in a series of mishaps to plague the new government which has been in office for less than two weeks and is due to begin talks with international creditors on Thursday on revising the terms of its massive bailout.

Prime Minister Antonis Samaras was hospitalized for major eye surgery immediately after his oath of office while his designated finance minister also fell ill and had to be replaced.

The new deputy merchant marine minister was also forced to resign in a conflict of interest case involving the ownership of an offshore company.





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