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Greek Socialists Suffer Lawmaker's Defection, Majority Drops to 2


Parliament member Milena Apostolaki reacts during the speech of Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou to the Socialist members of parliament in Athens, October 31, 2011.

Parliament member Milena Apostolaki reacts during the speech of Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou to the Socialist members of parliament in Athens, October 31, 2011.

A member of Greece's ruling Socialists has defected from the party following Prime Minister George Papandreou's decision to hold a referendum on the European debt deal.

Milena Apostolaki said Tuesday she would become an independent lawmaker. Her decision reduces the governing Socialists to just a two-seat majority, with 152 members in the 300-seat parliament.

The defection comes just days before a crucial vote of confidence in the government called for Friday by Mr. Papandreou.

The prime minister has not yet set a date for the referendum.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

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