Tsipras digs in his heels, aligns with Pode­mos

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras made a fresh call for early elec­tions on Satur­day, dur­ing a speech in Madrid at the found­ing con­fer­ence of Pode­mos, Spain’s left­ist, anti-aus­ter­ity party which has surged in opin­ion polls.

Declar­ing that Greece is “on the brink of a his­toric change,” Tsipras said his party would not ac­cept “any so­lu­tion that does not have the back­ing of the Greek peo­ple” and which fails to ad­dress the is­sue of the coun­try’s debt. The com­ments ap­peared to be a snub to over­tures from coali­tion politi­cians for a pos­si­ble co­op­er­a­tion. Tsipras also re­jected the “cuts and aus­ter­ity that are fu­el­ing overindebt­ed­ness.”

The fact that both SYRIZA and Pode­mos are lead­ing in the opin­ion polls shows there is hope for “achiev­ing what was un­til yes­ter­day im­pos­si­ble, to change the course of Europe,” Tsipras said.

SYRIZA has vowed to block the coali­tion’s can­di­date in pres­i­den­tial elec­tions next Fe­bru­ary in a bid to force snap polls. But the left­ists re­main di­vided on many is­sues. On Satur­day veteran left­ist and MEP Mano­lis Gle­zos said it was pos­si­ble the coali­tion might get the 180-seat su­per-majority in Par­lia­ment and ap­prove its pres­i­den­tial can­di­date. Gle­zos said many MPs, par­tic­u­larly in the coali­tion, want to avoid snap polls as their re-elec­tion is far from cer­tain.

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