The ruling party in Greece has lost ground in the elections for the European Parliament as voters punish the national government for perceived failures in their handling of the economic crisis.
Their 32.29% of the vote is down from 43% in 2004, and is worth 8 seats. The opposition Socialists of PASOK roared into first place with 36.65% , also worth 8 seats.
Voting is theoretically obligatory, although not sanctioned, in Greece but turnout was only 52.63%, even if many EU states would have been happy with such a figure.
The Greens, who hardly made any impression at all in 2004, managed between 3.49% and picked up a seat.
A voter turnout in the region of 80% has given the opposition Maltese Socialist party an absolute majority in the European parliament elections with 54.77% and three seats to the ruling conservative party’s 40.49% and two seats.
Opposition socialists claim this represents voter dissatisfaction with the government’s handling of the economic crisis which has hit the Mediteranean island particularly hard.
Malta will send 5 MEPs to the European Parliament and if and when the Lisbon Treaty comes into force, will send a 6th MEP.
In Cyprus it is the opposition centre-right party which has won the EU election.
The Disy party won 35.65% of the vote and 3 out of the 6 seats up for grabs.
The ruling Akel party won 34.90% of the vote, and 2 seats. The Centrist party polled 12.28% and the Socialists of Edek polled 9.85%, sharing the two remaining seats.
Voter turnout was high at 59.4%, although down from 72.5% in 2004.
Opposition parties clean up in Greece, Cyprus, & Malta