Christos Stylianides

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Christos Stylianides
Stylianides.JPG
European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management
Assumed office
1 November 2014
PresidentJean-Claude Juncker
Preceded byKristalina Georgieva (International Cooperation,
Humanitarian Aid and Crisis
Response)
Personal details
Born (1958-06-26) 26 June 1958 (age 60)
Nicosia, Cyprus
Political partyDemocratic Rally
Alma materUniversity of Thessaloniki

Christos Stylianides (Χρήστος Στυλιανίδης in Greek, born June 26, 1958) is a Cypriot politician who is the European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management since November 1, 2014. On October 24th, 2014 he was appointed as the European Union's Ebola Coordinator by the European Council.[1] He was elected as a Member of the European Parliament in the May 2014 European elections where he served until October 31, 2014.

He previously served as Government Spokesperson (2013-2014 and 1998-1999) and was member of the Parliament of the Republic of Cyprus from 2006 to 2013. As a MEP, served as member of the Committee on Budgets and substitute Member of the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy. He was also a member of the Delegation for relations with the USA and Substitute Member of the Delegation for relations with Israel.

Early life and career[edit]

Stylianides was born and raised in Nicosia, the son of a shopkeeper. In 1984, he received his degree as dental surgeon from Aristotelian University in Thessaloniki, Greece.[2] He later received executive education in International Development at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. Postgraduate seminars in political science, international relations and European Institutions followed.

Political career[edit]

Government Spokesperson of the Republic of Cyprus, 1998-1999[edit]

Under President Glafcos Clerides, Stylianides served as senior member of Government. Member of the President´s delegation to EU accession talks and intercommunal negotiations for Cyprus´s reunification. Resigned in 1999, in protest over a political corruption case which involved the public administration.[3]

Member of the Cyprus House of Representatives, 2006-2013[edit]

(Elected in 2006[4] and 2011[5] with Democratic Rally/DISY). Vice-Chair of the Committee on Foreign and European Affairs (2011-2013). Member of the Committee on European Affairs, the Committee of Internal Affairs and the Committee of Employment and Social Affairs (2006-2011). DISY co-ordinator for the Committees of European Affairs, Internal Affairs and Employment and Social Affairs.

Between 2006 and 2013, Stylianides also served Member of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly (2006-2011). He was elected Member of the Bureau of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly in 2012. Member of the OSCE PA Election Observation Missions. Represented Cyprus at plenary sessions and committee meetings of the Union for the Mediterranean Parliamentary Assembly.[6]

Government Spokesperson of the Republic of Cyprus, 2013-2014[edit]

In the government of Nicos Anastasiades,[7] Stylianides served as senior political official in the Executive branch, managing the Government’s communication strategy and heading the Government’s centralised Press and Information Office. He participated in the proceedings of the Council of Ministers and the meetings of the National Council of Cyprus. Also, he accompanied President Nicos Anastasiades as a member of his delegation, to all EU and UN high-level meetings. He stepped down in April 2014 to run as candidate in the May European Parliament elections.[8]

European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management, 2014-present[edit]

In October 2014, European Union leaders agreed to appoint Stylianides as the bloc’s point person on the Ebola virus epidemic in West Africa, as it sought to step up its response to the spread of the virus.[9] He later impressed many lawmakers at his parliamentary hearing as nominee for the post of European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management in the Juncker Commission.[10]

Political positions[edit]

Considered a "hardcore Europeanist", Stylianides advocated Cyprus’s accession to the European Union as far back as the mid-1990s, when he co-founded the Movement for Political Modernisation and Reform, despite the initial scepticism of many on the political scene.[11]

Although Stylianides is widely regarded a liberal by inclination, his political career has always been with the centre-right Democratic Rally party, DISY, on the grounds that it takes a more conciliatory approach to reuniting Cyprus. He supported the controversial United Nations-brokered blueprint for Cyprus known as the Annan plan, which called for an end to the island’s division and for reunification of its two feuding communities in a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation – in a referendum in 2004, the plan was accepted by a majority of Turkish Cypriots but overwhelmingly rejected by Stylianides’s fellow Greeks Cypriots.[12]

Other activities[edit]

Council Member of the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR).[13]

Co-founded the Movement for Political Modernization and Reform (1995), promoting Cyprus´s EU Accession and State & political reform.

Leading member of grassroots youth movements in support of EU membership and the solution of the Cyprus problem since the early 1980s.

Actively involved in the rapprochement between the Greek Cypriot and the Turkish Cypriot communities through joint civil society and political initiatives.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Christos Stylianides – crisis commissioner". POLITICO. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  2. ^ Helena Smith (October 30, 2014), Christos Stylianides – crisis commissioner European Voice.
  3. ^ "Cyprus News Agency: News in Greek (PM), 99-03-16". Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  4. ^ "Parliament Of Cyprus". Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  5. ^ "Parliament Of Cyprus". Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  6. ^ BDigital Web Solutions. "Η ΚΑΘΗΜΕΡΙΝΗ, kathimerini.com.cy". Η ΚΑΘΗΜΕΡΙΝΗ. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  7. ^ "New Government Spokesman assumes duties". Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  8. ^ "Government spokesman steps down". Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  9. ^ Naftali Bendavid (October 23, 2014), EU Appoints Ebola Response Coordinator Wall Street Journal.
  10. ^ Alastair Macdonald (October 2, 2014), EU Commission nominees face further hearings Reuters.
  11. ^ Helena Smith (October 30, 2014), Christos Stylianides – crisis commissioner European Voice.
  12. ^ Helena Smith (October 30, 2014), Christos Stylianides – crisis commissioner European Voice.
  13. ^ "The Council". Retrieved 25 April 2015.
Political offices
Preceded by
Androulla Vassiliou
Cypriot European Commissioner
2014–present
Incumbent
Preceded by
Kristalina Georgieva
as European Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response
European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management
2014–present