NEWS

European elections not a referendum for the government, Greek PM says

Sunday's European Parliament elections are not a referendum for the conservative-led administration, Prime Minister Antonis Samaras said Friday while warning however against an 'accident' that would create instability in the country.

“It would be a mistake to allow the European election [results] create instability, because instability can have unchecked consequences,” Samaras said in an interview with Ethnos newspaper that was published on Friday.

“It took many sacrifices to get Greece back on its feet. But it would take an 'accident' or an unwise vote at the polls to let everything go to waste and send us back to where we where four years ago,” Samaras said.

The conservative leader said that elections Sunday are not a referendum for the coalition government while attacking leftist SYRIZA opposition of making promises it cannot keep.

“Some people out there say they will shred the bailout agreements but they don't know how. They say they'll raise salaries with money that doesn't exist. They don't say where they will find it, they don't say from whom they will borrow, because there is nobody that will lend it to us,” Samaras told Ethnos.

In a final bid to convince voters about his message, Samaras is due to deliver a speech at a rally in the central Athens Syntagma Square on Friday night.

SYRIZA lead

Meanwhile, two new opinion polls on voting intentions for European Parliament elections show leftist opposition SYRIZA ahead of New Democracy by 2.5-3.2 percent.

A Public Issue survey for Efimerida ton Syntakton newspaper put the leftists on 30 percent against 27.5 percent for the conservatives.

The center-left Olive Tree (Elia) alliance came in third on 8.5 percent, followed by the neofascist Golden Dawn on 8 percent. The Communist Party (KKE) and centrist newcomers To Potami (The River) were both on 6.5 percent. The right-wing, anti-bailout Independent Greeks party was on 3 percent and Democratic Left (DIMAR) on 2.5 percent.

A Metron Analysis poll for Antenna TV also put SYRIZA first with 24.2 percent and ND second on 21 percent. The poll showed To Potami on 6.8 percent, Golden Dawn on 6.7 percent, Elia on 6.5 percent and KKE on 3.2 percent. The Independent Greeks were on 2.8 percent and Democratic Left on 2 percent.

European Parliament elections are held on Sunday on the same day as the second round of the country's municipal and regional vote.

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