Sakellaropoulou, 63, is a French-educated expert in constitutional and environmental law [Vassilis Rempapis/Eurokinissi/AFP]

Greece will elect its first woman president on January 22 after leading opposition parties on Thursday approved the government’s nomination of top judge Ekaterini Sakellaropoulou.

Main opposition leftist leader Alexis Tsipras said Sakellaropoulou was an “exceptional judge” and a defender of human rights.

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The socialist KINAL party also said it would support the nomination of the 63-year-old current head of the Council of State, Greece‘s top administrative court.

Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis had announced Sakellaropoulou’s candidacy in a surprise televised address on Wednesday.

“The time has come for Greece to open up to the future,” Mitsotakis said, emphasising that the selection breaks with tradition not only because Sakellaropoulou is

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