Monday December 22, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
13o C
8o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Greek government talks in final stretch

 But chances of a deal appear slim, new elections likely

Greece's wrangling politicians were locked in last-ditch efforts to form a coalition government Friday, with chances of a deal appearing slim and the country's future in Europe's common currency at stake.

Voters on Sunday punished both main parties, the conservative New Democracy and socialist PASOK, for their handling of the country's protracted financial crisis, deserting them for a myriad of smaller parties on the right and left of the political spectrum. The result left a hung parliament, with no party able to form a government.

Unless an agreement is found, the country will head to new elections next month. The political instability has alarmed Greece's European creditors, who have warned that Greece's international bailout package, and its continued presence in the euro, could be threatened.

Hopes for a deal between election winner New Democracy and third placed PASOK with the small Democratic Left party of Fotis Kouvelis suffered a setback when Kouvelis insisted he could not be part of a government with just the conservatives and socialists.

Kouvelis insisted any coalition must include election runner-up Alexis Tsipras, whose anti-bailout Radical Left Coalition, or Syriza, won 16.78 percent of the vote and 52 seats in the 300-member parliament.

So far, Tsipras has refused to join any government that does not reject the austerity terms of Greece's bailout, saying the spending cuts and tax cuts are destroying the country's chances of recovering from its deep financial crisis.

"It is clear from its reaction that from the first moment, Syriza wanted elections,» Kouvelis told his deputies in a speech Friday. «And without Syriza, a government cannot be formed that is in harmony with the popular will, representing the strength of each political party."

"We have made our position clear. In a government with (only) New Democracy and PASOK, we will not take part,» Kouvelis said.

The statements dampened hopes that Kouvelis could have made a deal with Antonis Samaras, whose New Democracy holds 108 parliamentary seats, and former finance minister Evangelos Venizelos' PASOK, which suffered its worst election result in nearly 40 years to gain just 41 seats.

Venizelos, who currently holds the mandate to seek coalition partners, met with Kouvelis on Thursday night and had indicated a meeting of minds. Samaras, who met with Venizelos on Friday morning, had also indicated a solution was possible.

"Our only condition is that we remain in the euro. And the proposal made by Mr. Kouvelis is close to our own,» he said. «So there is a basic agreement. The problem is that Syriza is not taking up its responsibility ... and is preparing for elections."

But Kouvelis insists he wants a broad coalition that would include more parties. He also risks being branded as a left-wing traitor, if he helps the pro-austerity parties to govern without Tsipras' support.

If new elections are held, Tsipras is expected to make gains. An opinion poll published late Thursday indicated Syriza would come first with nearly 28 percent of the vote in a new election - up from 16.8 - and win 128 seats.

The Marc survey for private Alpha TV gave New Democracy 20.3 percent and 57 seats, and showed the extremist right-wing Golden Dawn declining to 5.7 percent, with 16 seats instead of its current 21.

The May 8-9 nationwide survey was the first published after Sunday's vote. It gave no margin of error. [AP]

ekathimerini.com , Friday May 11, 2012 (14:47)  
Police collar fraudsters who conned money out of jobless
Bill aims to close down landfills, curb EU fines
Inspector finds serious problems in doctors´ fund management
Shops in Greek cities to close on holidays but not eves
Alpha Bank Cyprus to absorb local Emporiki
The governing board of Alpha Bank Cyprus agreed on Monday to the acquisition of Emporiki Cyprus, the subsidiary of Greece’s Emporiki Bank which has been absorbed by the Alpha Group. Alpha Ba...
Greece’s 10-year bond yield drops 13 bps to 8.30 pct
Greece’s five-year bonds rose on Monday after a poll on Sunday showed that the lead of the anti-austerity SYRIZA party had narrowed before the second round of a presidential vote on Tuesday....
Inside Business
SOCCER
Special day for Abidal, lucky one for PAOK
PAOK scraped through its Livadia challenge beating Levadiakos to remain on top of the Super League for Christmas, one point ahead of Olympiakos that enjoyed a great game at Kalloni and offer...
BASKETBALL
Explosive Barca unfazed by Panathinaikos, bomb scare
Panathinaikos lost 80-67 at home to Barcelona on Friday in a rather meaningless game at the end of the first group stage of the Euroleague, but the encounter will be remembered for the bomb ...
Inside Sports
INTERVIEW
Klaus Regling stresses debt sustainability through commitment to reforms
BRUSSELS – The man who is responsible for the loans to Greece as managing director of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM/EFSF), Klaus Regling, is the only high-ranking European official w...
INTERVIEW
‘Crisis of confidence will come back again and again,’ says Thomas Piketty
He’s treated like a rock star wherever he goes to lecture. His book “Capital in the 21st Century,” a study on income and wealth inequality from the 18th century to the present, recently tran...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Police collar fraudsters who conned money out of jobless
2. Bill aims to close down landfills, curb EU fines
3. Alpha Bank Cyprus to absorb local Emporiki
4. Greece’s 10-year bond yield drops 13 bps to 8.30 pct
5. Traders stay focused on Tuesday’s vote
6. Inspector finds serious problems in doctors´ fund management
more news
Today
This Week
1. Prosecutor gathers depositions in Independent Greeks 'bribe' probe
2. Euro shaky on ECB and Greece, dollar keeps edge
3. Government accuses SYRIZA and Independent Greeks of 'clear alliance'
4. Greek parliament vote in balance after Samaras election offer
5. Draghi starts squaring QE circle in month of persuasion for ECB
6. Klaus Regling stresses debt sustainability through commitment to reforms
Today
This Week
1. Samaras summons bond vigilantes with euro exit talk
2. High stakes
3. Europe's drama in Greece needs final act to avoid tragedy
4. A friendly yet firm message from Pierre Moscovici
5. On the edge but not gutless
6. Ship with 200 migrants off Pylos towed to Italy after passengers refuse to stop in Greece
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.