Papandreou proposal sparks war of words inside PASOK

Controversial comments by former PASOK chief and ex-Prime Minister George Papandreou, effectively challenging Evangelos Venizelos’s leadership, have rival factions inside the once-dominant party sharpening their knives.

During a meeting with party aides Monday, a few days after Papandreou called for an emergency congress and an election for party chief, Venizelos called for restraint, adding that he will not engage in a personal confrontation with his predecessor.

Meanwhile, comments by other senior cadres exposed the widening rifts in the junior coalition party. Ex-Finance Minister Filippos Sachinidis, an MP, backed Papandreou’s idea saying that a convention could re-engage the party’s grassroots, while MP Thanos Moraitis described Papandreou’s comments as an “expression of concern about PASOK’s future.”

Inside the pro-Venizelos camp, PASOK spokesman Dimitris Karydis said the former party chief was being “unreasonable.”