NEWS

Greece still in a deadlock

Tuesday morning saw Greek political leaders in a continued deadlock over naming a new a premier and cabinet, despite mounting pressure from the European Union and international markets for an end to the uncertainty in Athens that is threatening to send shockwaves through the eurozone and put in jeopardy an 8-billion-euro loan tranche without which the Greek state will be unable to meet its obligations by the end of the month.

Sources close to outgoing Socialist Prime Minister George Papandreou and opposition New Democracy leader Antonis Samaras have suggested that the most likely candidates to steer the debt-ridden country through the crisis until national elections are called on February 19 are former Governor of the Bank of Greece and ex-European Central Bank Vice President Lucas Papademos (photo), European Ombudsman Nikiforos Diamandouros and former Economy Minister and Greece?s current representative at the International Monetary Fund Panagiotis Roumeliotis.

Sources on Tuesday suggested that Papandreou had spoken by telephone to Papademos,ahead of the premier’s scheduled meeting with his cabinet at noon, though no details were released in regards to the content of their conversation.

On Monday, New Democracy is rumored to have rejected a request by the former ECB VP to pick some members of the cabinet and for the interim government to serve for more than the planned three months.