News Local Greek PM to seek support from ally to avert snap election

Greek PM to seek support from ally to avert snap election

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras will ask his conservative coalition ally on Friday to keep supporting the government, hoping to avert a snap election after the parties fell out over a deal on the name of neighbouring Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

Tsipras has said that he will request a confidence vote if he loses the parliamentary support of the right-wing Independent Greeks (ANEL) party. ANEL has threatened to reject the Macedonia accord if it comes to parliament for approval, though it is unclear if they will pull out of government altogether.

Panos Kammenos, defence minister and head of ANEL, has described the Macedonia pact as a “bad deal”.

“I don’t think Mr Kammenos will pull his confidence in the government.. That is what I will ask of him when I meet him on Friday,” Tsipras told Greece’s Open TV in an interview on Wednesday night.

The left-right governing coalition has a razor-thin majority, possessing just 153 seats in the 300 member parliament. Seven of those seats belong to ANEL.

Despite strong domestic opposition, Greece last year agreed to the former Yugoslav republic adopting the name North Macedonia, paving the way for Skopje’s possible admission to the European Union and NATO. The accord, signed in June of last year, is now pending approval in the Macedonian parliament.

Many Greeks, however, are irked that their Balkan neighbour is assuming a name linked to Greek heritage and identical to a northern region of Greece.

Tsipras and Kammenos were expected to meet on Friday afternoon, officials said. “The answers will be given at that meeting,” said ANEL spokesman Theodoros Tosounidis.

Should Tsipras lose a confidence vote the country will head to snap elections. The leftist leader is trailing opinion polls behind opposition New Democracy leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis, a conservative.

Mitsotakis has also vowed to block the deal.

If Kammenos withdraws his support, Tsipras said that he would request a confidence vote before the deal comes to parliament. He also said that should he fail to secure an absolute majority of 151 lawmakers, he would complete some pending reforms before calling an early election.

The coalition’s full term expires in October.

(Reuters)

Top Stories

Cyprus to launch SMS campaign to avert migrant arrivals

    Cyprus is launching a multilingual SMS campaign to head off more migrant arrivals by dispelling the mistaken belief that it is a gateway to...

Deputy Minister participates in EU teleconferences on research, innovation and space issues

Cyprus' Deputy Minister for Research, Innovation and Digital Policy Kyriacos Kokkinos participated on May 29 in two informal teleconferences of the EU Ministers responsible...

Police book three restaurants for breaking distancing rule

  Three restaurants were booked after police carried out 642 checks from 6 pm on Sunday to 6 am on Monday at various businesses to...

GHS Phase Two gets underway with 85% of island’s doctors on board

Phase Two of GHS (Gesy) that incorporates inpatient services to the reform has begun as of today, June 1, with 85% of Cyprus' doctors...

Solar heater subsidy scheme launched

  The RES and Energy Conservation Fund is accepting applications for a scheme subsidising  solar heaters for water at residences for 2020. The scheme has a...

Taste

Local cuisine: An introduction

Rich in fresh ingredients and tasty herbs, offers the very best of Mediterranean culinary delights. Head out to a tavern and feast on a...

Spiced lamb with beetroot salad and scented yoghurt

Lay the lamb on a tray, skin side down. Rub with crushed garlic, sprinkle with spices and ground pistachios, wrap in plastic wrap and...

Easy seafood pasta with white wine sauce

Ingredients: 2-3 tbsp olive oil 1 garlic clove, chopped 2-3 tablespoons of whipped cream 1/3 cup white wine 300g spaghetti, roughly broken 300-400g of...

Traditional salads that will blow your mind away

This traditional salads will make you actually love salads! Cyprus may be famous for souvla and kleftiko but if you try the traditional salads with...