PhD student is appointed Cyprus defence minister

A PhD student at Kent has been appointed as defence minister in Cyprus.

Christoforos Fokaides, who recently submitted his doctoral thesis in the School of Politics and International Relations, was named in the role by Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades following the sudden death of the previous Minister of Defence in March.

As well as studying at Kent, Christoforos teaches political science at the European University of Cyprus and is a member of the country’s ruling Disy party’s executive bureau. He studied economics and Turkish history at the University of Cyprus before undertaking his PhD at Kent.

Christoforos’ supervising tutor at Kent, Dr Neophytos Loizides, of the School of Politics and International Relations, said: ‘While here, Christoforos has pursued his doctoral studies while serving in important policy positions back in Cyprus. Following the completion of his doctoral studies, he had been due to continue his academic career with a prestigious fellowship at Yale University awarded by the Whitney and Betty MacMillan Center for International and Area Studies.

‘Everyone in the School congratulates Christoforos on his appointment and we hope to see him back here at the University when things quieten down a bit for him.’