Former PASOK ministers launch new party

Katseli, Kastanidis attract dissenters to Social Agreement for Greece in Europe

Former PASOK ministers Louka Katseli and Haris Kastanidis, who were both ejected from the party's parliamentary group after voting against Greece's new loan deal with its foreign creditors, on Wednesday launched a new party, with the name Social Agreement for Greece in Europe.

The new party has attracted a handful of MPs who were also expelled from PASOK for disagreeing with the party line on the loan agreement. They include Lambros Michos, Kyriaki Tektonidou, Andreas Triantafyllopoulos, Maria Kyriakopoulou and Giorgos Kassaras.

During her speech inaugurating the new party, Katseli stressed that its chief aim would be to highlight that there are alternatives to ?extortionate dilemmas and fear-mongering,? noting that authorities had missed opportunities during negotiations on the second memorandum for a lack of political courage.

?Between the disastrous ?yes to everything? and the groundless ?no to everything? there is negotiation,? she said.

Her party?s priorities would include curbing a sharp increase in the number of Greeks who are homeless and poor. She also looked toward the strengthening of the state banking system and the delineation of a Greek exclusive economic zone with all bordering countries, noting that ?Greece?s future extends beyond that of Europe.?

Kastanidis, for his part, said the party did not aim to make promises but to provide a realistic solution to the country?s problems.