Papandreou tells party he will step aside

Greece’s former prime minister George Papandreou told his PASOK socialist party on Wednesday that he will step down as party leader and not seek re-election, a socialist deputy told Reuters.

“He told us that he will resign as PASOK leader and that he will not run for prime minister again,» said the deputy who attended a party meeting on the leadership succession.

Papandreou, 59, stepped down as prime minister in November last year to make way for a new coalition government that would help Greece resolve its biggest financial crisis in decades.

A bungled attempt to call a referendum on his government’s deeply unpopular austerity policies spooked Greece’s European partners and precipitated his downfall two years after winning elections.

“He said he would probably step down in June,» another party deputy told Reuters.


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