Gov’t seeks to set­tle un­rest in PASOK

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

In a bid to quell the un­rest within PASOK, the gov­ern­ment plans to in­form its party mem­bers and MPs at the be­gin­ning of next week about the mea­sures it wants to adopt in or­der to bring pub­lic fi­nances un­der con­trol and to con­vince the EU and the IMF to lend Greece more money.

Sources said yes­ter­day that an in­for­mal cabi­net meet­ing will take place on Mon­day so min­is­ter can dis­cuss the midterm fis­cal plan. On Tues- day, Fi­nance Min­is­ter Gior­gos Pa­pa­con­stanti­nou will set out the de­tails of the scheme for MPs. This dis­cus­sion will be fol­lowed by a meet­ing of PASOK’s po­lit­i­cal coun­cil.

Gov­ern­ment sources said that Prime Min­is­ter Ge­orge Pa­pan­dreou and his aides want MPs and party mem­bers to have a chance to ex­press their opin­ions be­fore the bill goes to Par­lia­ment. PASOK has a six-seat ma­jor­ity but can- not risk a re­bel­lion by its own MPs. “If there is no an­a­lyt­i­cal dis­cus­sion, I will not vote,” said PASOK deputy Thomas Robopou­los.

Con­cerns about a back­lash from So­cial­ist lawmakers have been ex­ac­er­bated by a letter that 16 PASOK MPs sent to Pa­pan­dreou on Thurs­day. They urged him to al­low am­ple time for the mea­sures to be de­bated and ques­tioned why the gov­ern­ment had not pro­vided an as­sess­ment of what had gone wrong over the past year.

When the EU-IMF mem­o­ran­dum was ap­proved by Par­lia­ment last May, the gov­ern­ment re­ceived the back­ing of the Pop­u­lar Ortho­dox Rally (LAOS) but its leader, Gior­gos Karatzaferis, said yes­ter­day the right-wing party would not back the lat­est set of mea­sures. “We won’t vote for the midterm plan be­cause we al­ready gave them one chance and they wasted it,” he said.

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