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Athens News Agency: News in English, 10-01-31

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Crucial week for Greek economy
  • [02] Samaras: ND will back necessary measures by gov't
  • [03] KKE: Strong popular front
  • [04] Rallying of political world
  • [05] SYN decides extraordinary Congress

  • [01] Crucial week for Greek economy

    The week beginning on Monday will be crucial for the Greek economy, as the EU College of Commissioners (European Commission plenary) is due to release its recommendation on the new Greek Stability and Development program on Wednesday. Equally crucial is the anticipated release of the budget revenues for January, on which will depend whether the measures decided by the government will be accelerated or applied later.

    Prime minister George Papandreou and finance minister George Papaconstantinou waged a veritable communications 'battle' over the past week to restore the Greek economy's lost credibility and reverse the negative climate, in a flurry of interviews with the international media on the sidelines of the 40th World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, and in the premier's address to the Forum.

    A plus in, and boost to, the effort were the votes of confidence forthcoming from the European Commission and the European Central Bank (ECB) in statements by Commissioner for economic and monetary affairs Joaquin Almunia and ECB president Jean-Claude Trichet, who categorically denied speculation of Greece defaulting and/or withdrawing from the eurozone, which brought a substantial decline in the Greek bond spread that had risen dramatically in the wake of default/withdrawal rumors.

    [02] Samaras: ND will back necessary measures by gov't

    Main opposition New Democracy (ND) leader Antonis Samaras announced that his party will back measures and initiatives of the PASOK government that are necessary to tackle the economic crisis "because the times are critical and this is demanded for the country's interests", in a newspaper interview appearing on Sunday.

    In an interview with "Kathimerini" newspaper, Samaras stressed, however, that "consensus is a two-way street".

    "We proposed measures. We backed every necessary initiative," Samaras said, adding that ND "does not speculate politically on the fronts of social unrest, as PASOK had done when it was the main opposition party."

    Samaras further stressed that ND "does not cultivate panic", and accused the present government of "mistakes in the management of the economy".

    [03] KKE: Strong popular front

    The Communist Party of Greece (KKE) organised a meeting with party supporters and friends, attended by party leader Aleka Papariga, on Sunday.

    A KKE announcement called for the urgent formation of a strong popular front in order to repel the harsh anti-popular measures being advanced by the government and the EU, with the consensus of main opposition New Democracy (ND).

    The front should be forged under the banner of "No sacrifice for the plutocracy", the KKE said, adding that the responsible position by the people is that of not accepting being permanently and irreversibly doomed to poverty.

    [04] Rallying of political world

    Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS) leader George Karatzaferis called for the rallying of the entire political world "in order to have a vague hope to exit the crisis".

    Speaking to reporters before a party event in Thessaloniki on Saturday, Karatzaferis called for the rallying together of all the political forces of the country is required "so that we may have a vague hope of bringing the country out of the crisis".

    He said that prime minister George Papandreou "tried to turn night into day at Davos, and went through painful moments", referring to the recent 40th World Economic Forum.

    [05] SYN decides extraordinary Congress

    The Coalition of the Left, Movements and Ecology (Synaspismos, or SYN) Central Committee on Sunday adopted a proposal by party leader Alexis Tsipras for an extraordinary Congress in the next three months.

    The decision was taken on the closing day of a two-day Central Committee meeting in a central Athens hotel.

    Tsipras tabled the proposal during the opening session on Saturday, saying that an extraordinary Congress is necessary for several reasons, including a crisis between Synaspismos and the SYN-led Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) parliamentary alliance, the smallest party in the legislature.

    "We have tired the people of the Left," Tsipras, who heads the SYRIZA parliamentary group, told the Central Committee on Saturday, stressing that "we will not organise a Congress for the purpose of squaring accounts".

    Referring to political developments and the state of the economy, he characterised the government's policy as "disappointing".

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