Chances appear slim of a breakthrough in talks between several Greek political leaders attempting to form a coalition government five days after parliamentary elections.
A deal between the centre-right New Democracy, which won Sunday’s election, the socialist PASOKs and the small Democratic Left party appear to have failed.
Fotis Kouvelis, leader of the Democratic Left insists that a fourth party, Syriza, must be part of any future pact:
“Syriza must assume its own responsibilities and abandon it’s calculating electoral strategy. If there is no broad coalition government, the Democratic Left will not participate in a joint government of New Democracy and PASOK.”
If there’s no agreement, Greece will hold a new election within 4 weeks.
Syriza, a radical left anti-bailout party led by bright young thing Alexis Tsipras, won nearly 17 percent of Sunday’s vote and nearly 52 seats in the 300 member parliament.
Tsipras is holding out for new elections and has promised to tear up Greece’s international rescue deal if he wins.
A new election could be catastrophic for New Democracy, which benefitted from a rule that gives 50 bonus seats to the group that comes first.
Syriza’s populist manifesto is expected to help it gain ground in any repeat election.