ATHENS (MNI) – Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou “is
considering stepping down in the name of unity, government spokesman
George Petalotis told reporters here Wednesday.

The main opposition party leader, Antonis Samaras, had called for
the resignation in favor coalition government under a new prime minister
of joint acceptance, according to media reports.

You have failed and no longer have the support of the people or
the markets, Samaras was reported as saying to Papandreou.

During a telephone conversation between the two, the conservative
party leader once again rejected an appeal to vote in favour of the
tax-burdened medium-term fiscal plan introduced by the government last

According to the media, the opposition leader said that the new
government should renegotiate the current lending agreement, the
medium-term fiscal plan, with EU leaders and undertake the task of
negotiating the new loan which is on the cards for Greece. After that,
the emergency government would step down, opening the way to early

The government spokesman said that the resignation scenario was
the prime ministers idea and not Mr Samarass.

The prime minister appeared to propose that the new government
should include not only the two main parties but as many parties as
possible and should not just be formed just for the next few months to
renegotiate economic policy with the EU and the IMF, but rather for a
two-year term.

The reports say the prime minister proposed that the new government
should also change the electoral laws, amend the constitution and carry
out a new economic policy.

Papandreou is expected to make a new round of calls with all party
leaders before addressing the public later this evening.

Political analysts say that there is only a slim chance that
Papandreou will announce his resignation today. Instead, it is
speculated that he will give an indication that he is willing to discuss
a coalition government with a new premier, for which negotiations might
take weeks.

While the governing and the main opposition parties quarrel over
whose idea it was to form a coalition government, tensions continue to
mount in the streets of Athens, where thousands of protestors are
clashing with the police.


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