NEWS

Samaras gears up to present growth plan on Friday

Prime Minister Antonis Samaras continued an election road trip that will take him around the country with a visit to the island of Lesvos on Tuesday but the campaign for the local and European Parliament elections is expected to peak on Friday when he is due to set out his growth plan, also known as Greece 2021.

After speaking to a female audience in Lamia, central Greece, on Monday, Samaras spoke about agriculture at an olive mill on Lesvos yesterday and is due to address an audience of seniors in western Athens today, with an appearance on Corfu for a culture-related presentation due before the week is out. The speeches reflect New Democracy’s attempt to incorporate a wide range of themes and appeal to a broad cross-section of society.

Samaras is also due to appear alongside conservative candidate for Attica governor Giorgos Koumoutsakos in Athens but will also speak in Thessaloniki and Patra before the first round of local elections on Sunday. However, the key moment is likely to be the presentation of the growth plan on Friday.

Sources said the government is fairly confident going into Sunday’s contest that candidates who have been backed by the coalition will perform well, especially in comparison to SYRIZA’s hopefuls.

SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras was in Moscow on Tuesday, where he held talks with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Vladimir Titov. Tsipras expressed his support for a diplomatic solution to the conflict in Ukraine but also suggested that the European Union had interfered in the former communist country’s domestic affairs.

“The major deficit in Europe today is that of democracy,” he said. “Unfortunately, the European leadership wants governments in Ukraine and Greece that are subservient – governments that do not represent the interests of their people but the shortsighted goals of the European leadership.”

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