PA­SOK nixes Pa­pan­dreou lead­er­ship chal­lenge

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

The ju­nior coali­tion part­ner PA­SOK re­jected over the week­end a pro­posal by the party’s for­mer leader and ex-premier George Pa­pan­dreou for the party to call an emer­gency congress and a sub­se­quent lead­er­ship elec­tion, warn­ing against “mis­er­able navel­gaz­ing” that risks fu­elling “un­cer­tainty and in­sta­bil­ity.”

In a sharply-worded state­ment, which un­der­scored the ten­sions be­tween PA­SOK leader Evan­ge­los Venizelos and his pre­de­ces­sor Pa­pan­dreou, the party said it would move for­ward based on de­ci­sions from its congress last year and re­cent de­ci­sions by its po­lit­i­cal com­mit­tee. Pa­pan­dreou is en­ti­tled to ex­press his opin­ions as a mem­ber of the party’s cen­tral bod­ies, the state­ment noted. But it added a clear warn­ing: “We will not al­low any­one to dis­rupt the frame­work within which PA­SOK, the Demo­cratic Align­ment, and chiefly the coun­try, are op­er­at­ing.”

Venizelos on Fri­day won the support of another for­mer PA­SOK premier, Costas Simitis, to cre­ate a new cen­ter-left party with the So­cial­ists at its heart. After Fri­day’s meet­ing be­tween Venizelos and Simitis, the lat­ter’s of­fice de­scribed the cre­ation of a new party, which would be called Demo­cratic Align­ment, as a “sig­nif­i­cant step.” Pa­pan­dreou is op­posed to PA­SOK, which was founded by his fa­ther, be­ing in­cor­po­rated within a broader group.

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