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Eurozone crisis

Cyprus central bank chief Panicos Demetriades resigns

The head of Cyprus' central bank has handed in his resignation, indicating he would leave his post in mid-April. He cited personal reasons for his move, but experts also spoke of tensions with the government.

Cyprus' central bank chief, Panicos Demetriades, submitted his resignation on Monday, with President Nicos Anastasiades immediately accepting his decision, an official statement from Nicosia said.

The news came as the southern eurozone member state continued in its struggle to emerge from a deep recession.

State radio said Demetriades in his resignation letter cited "personal and family reasons and difficulties in working with the central bank board" in explaining his decision to step down.

The central bank governor added he would leave his post on April 10. He represented Cyprus on the ECB Governing Council.

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The government thanked the banker for helping to prevent the country's bankruptcy and stabilizing the national financial sector.

Earlier media reports had highlighted that the center-right government and the left-leaning central bank chief were often been at loggerheads over how to kick-start the ailing economy.

Last year, the president was reported to have launched a stinging attack against Demetriades over his handling of a 10-billion-euro ($13.77-billion) rescue deal brokered with international creditors.

Cyprus has lately been aiming to implement unpopular measures related to the privatization of state-owned companies. The country must raise 1.4 billion euros from the scheme as another prerequisite for receiving more international aid.

hg/rc (AFP, AP, Reuters)

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