Crunch time for Greek government over ERT TV

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Crunch time for Greek government over ERT TV

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As protests continue over the shock shutdown of Greek state TV ERT, the government is sitting down for talks to smooth over the fallout.

The left-wing coalition partners of conservative prime minister Antonis Samaras have clashed over the closure, raising the prospect of new elections.

The decision to close the 75-year-old ERT broadcaster was made by ministerial decree, meaning that consultation was not required. A move which sparked the ire of politicians and public alike.

However, Samaras defended his choice as crucial to meet EU-IMF bailout terms. German Chancellor Angela Merkel extended her support to him on Sunday.

Samaras is expected to give a televised speech tonight ahead of the talks under ERT’s streamlined NERIT even though it is not officially on air until August.

It appears to be the biggest test for the one year-old coalition government yet. The parties are reluctant to head to the ballot boxes yet again, as opinion polls show a drop in support, and bailout money would be further jeopardised.

ERT employees appear to hope for one thing, that the talks will bring their station back on air.