Karamanlis to meet Bakoyannis as New Democracy broods

Former Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis and ex-Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis are due to meet on Friday as New Democracy considers how to absorb the impact from its election defeat on Sunday.

Sources said that Bakoyannis asked for the meeting with Karamanlis, who has met several New Democracy officials over the past few days. There is no indication at the moment that anyone is considering mounting a leadership challenge against party president Antonis Samaras, but a number of conservatives have suggested that there should be a contest.

“New Democracy has to put in motion its internal process so that mistakes are corrected, it regroups as soon as possible and plays the role that it should,” said ex-minister Evripidis Stylianidis.

“Our policy was defined by a small group of people and they have to be held to account,” said former MP Giorgos Vlachos in an apparent reference to Samaras and his advisers. “The ND leadership owes us an explanation about what happened and what it is going to do.”

Karamanlis had featured as a potential candidate for president of the republic but SYRIZA appears to be leaning toward European Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos, although government spokesman Gavriil Sakellaridis said on Thursday that no decision has been taken. Sources said Samaras rang Avramopoulos on Thursday to assure him that he would have ND’s backing as well if he is nominated.