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Greeks Head to Polls Sunday; Polls Point to Coalition Government

  • VOA News

Syriza left-wing party leader and former Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, center, laughs as he meets with young people at a coffee shop in central Athens, Sept. 19, 2015.

Syriza left-wing party leader and former Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, center, laughs as he meets with young people at a coffee shop in central Athens, Sept. 19, 2015.

Greeks vote Sunday in their third national elections in eight months, during which the country held a referendum and experienced the shutdown of its banking system and capital controls that limited daily cash withdrawals.

The winner of the parliamentary vote is expected to implement deep economic reforms in order to receive a $98 billion bailout package brokered in August, a recapitalization of the country’s banks and the capital controls imposed earlier this year.

Both leading parties, Syriza and New Democracy, as well as most other smaller parties are committed to the bailout, including tax increases and reforms demanded by international creditors to keep Greece afloat, despite their different approaches to pensions and labor reform.

Survey results released Friday showed that former Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras’ radical-left Syriza party and the center-right New Democracy party of Vangelis Meimarakis would not win an outright majority.

If polls are correct, coalition talks would be necessary after the tally becomes known, probably no sooner than Monday morning.

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