News / Europe

Greek PM Survives Confidence Vote

Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou (R) and Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos applaud after winning a vote of confidence in the Greek parliament in Athens, Greece, November 5, 2011.
Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou (R) and Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos applaud after winning a vote of confidence in the Greek parliament in Athens, Greece, November 5, 2011.

Greek Prime Minister survived confidence vote in parliament late Friday, avoiding early elections which would have further destabilized the eurozone.

In a speech ahead of the vote, George Papandreou called for a new coalition government to approve a bailout deal vital for saving the country from bankruptcy and stabilizing the eurozone.

He told parliament that he would go to the Greek president Saturday to discuss formation of a power-sharing government that would secure the bailout. He said he was willing to let someone else lead the caretaker government, but he said calling for early elections would be disastrous.

Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos said the country desperately needed the next $11 billion installment of its existing $150 billion bailout.   European leaders and the International Monetary Fund have said Greece would not get another cent if it backs out of its bailout agreement.

The vote took place a day after Papandreou scrapped a controversial referendum that had angered world leaders trying to formulate the eurozone rescue plan. The Greek leader faced opposition from the New Democracy party, as well as some members of his own Socialist [ Pasok] Party.

The Greek vote concluded a week of turmoil in the eurozone, which began with Papandreou's call for a referendum on the bailout for his country.   

The prime minister faced enormous international pressure to call off the referendum. He said the vote was a political move to get Greek opposition to support the bailout plan. He scrapped the referendum plan after the opposition lawmakers said they would support the bailout.

Thousands of protesters rallied in central Athens during the vote Friday against tough austerity measures included in the bailout.

Greek opposition leader Antonis Samaras has demanded Papandreou's resignation, saying he had jeopardized Greece's world financial standing by calling for the referendum.

Samaras also called for the creation of a transitional government to prepare for early elections.

Papandreou said that holding early elections would be "catastrophic," but added that he was open to talks with opposition members regarding the formation of a new government that would secure the debt deal.

<p><span class="article11"><i><span style="font-size: 7pt; line-height: 115%; font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;,&quot;&quot;;">Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.</span></i></span></p>

You May Like

Video British Fighters on Frontline of Islamic State Information War

It’s estimated that several hundred British citizens are fighting for Islamic State alongside other foreign jihadists More

Pakistan's Political Turmoil Again Shines Spotlight on Military

Thousands of protesters calling for PM Sharif to step down continue protests in front of parliament, as critics fear political impasse could spur another military coup More

Photogallery Ebola Quarantines Spark Anxiety in Liberian Capital

Food prices rise sharply as residents attempting purchases clash with security forces, leaving one person dead More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Native Bees May Help Save Cropsi
X
Deborah Block
August 22, 2014 12:23 AM
U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video Native Bees May Help Save Crops

U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video US Defense Officials Plan for Long-Term Strategy to Contain Islamic State

U.S. defense officials say American air strikes in Iraq have helped deter Islamic State militants for the time being, but that a broad international effort is needed to defeat the extremists permanently. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel warned Thursday that the group formerly known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL, is better organized, and financially and militarily stronger than any other known terrorist group. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Drug-Resistant Malaria Spreads in Southeast Asia

On Thailand’s border with Myanmar, also known as Burma, a malaria research and treatment clinic is stepping up efforts to eliminate a drug-resistant form of the parasite - before it spreads abroad. Steve Sandford reports from Mae Sot, Thailand.
Video

Video Gaza Conflict, Hamas Popularity Challenge Abbas

The Palestinian unity government of Mahmoud Abbas has failed to convince Hamas to agree to Egyptian-negotiated terms with Israel on a Gaza cease-fire. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports on what the Gaza conflict means for President Abbas, with whom U.S. officials have worked for years on a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Video

Video Nigeria's 'Nollywood' Movie Industry Rolls in High Gear

Twenty years after its birth in a video shop in Lagos, Nigeria's "Nollywood" is one of the most prolific film industries on earth. Despite low budgets and whirlwind production schedules, Nigerian films are wildly popular in Africa and industry professionals say they hope, in the future, their films will be as great in quality as they are in quantity. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Lagos.
Video

Video UN Launches 'Biggest Aid Operation in 30 Years' in Iraq

The United Nations has launched what it describes as one of the biggest aid operations in 30 years in northern Iraq, as hundreds of thousands of refugees flee the extremist Sunni militant group calling itself the Islamic State. As Kurdish and Iraqi forces battle the Sunni insurgents, the fighting has forced more people to flee their homes. Kurdish authorities say the international community must act now to avert a humanitarian catastrophe. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Cambodian American Hip Hop Artist Sings of Personal Struggles

A growing underground movement of Cambodian American hip hop artists is rapping about the struggles of living in urban America. Most, if not all of them, are refugees or children of refugees who came to the United States from Cambodia to escape the Khmer Rouge genocide of the 1970s. Through their music, the artists hope to give voice to immigrants who have been struggling quietly for years. Elizabeth Lee reports from Long Beach, California.
Video

Video African Media Tries to Educate Public About Ebola

While the Ebola epidemic continues to claim lives in West Africa, information technology specialists, together with radio and TV reporters, are battling misinformation and prejudice about the disease - using social media to educate the public about the deadly virus. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid