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Athens News Agency: News in English, 05-08-25

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Papandreou says gov't 'undermining' democratic institutions

  • [01] Papandreou says gov't 'undermining' democratic institutions

    Main opposition PASOK leader George Papandreou on Thursday again sharply criticised the government, this time during the first day of a two-day conference of his party's political council in the port town of Lavrio, southeast of Athens.

    Among others, Papandreou, the former foreign minister, said ruling ND's plan was exhausted when it achieved its goal of assuming power. He also accused the government of "undermining" democratic institutions, a reference to an extension of chief prosecutors' terms and a proposal allowing for mayoral and prefectural candidates to win their seats by taking 42 percent of more of the vote in a first round of local government elections.

    PASOK is bitterly opposed to both measures.

    In other criticism, Papandreou charged that Greece's capacious public sector is being politicised and taken over by New Democracy, while he repeated criticism over the government's economic policy.

    Conversely, he said past PASOK governments -- the party ruled the country from 1981 to 1989 and from 1993 to March 2004 -- were able to win the Olympic Games for Athens, promote Cyprus' EU accession, achieve GDP growth of up to 5.5 percent annually, as well as include Greece in the euro-zone.

    Moreover, he dismissed unremitting criticism by Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis that all of the country's problems stem from PASOK's governance. Along those lines, he said there was no intent by his party to criticise the premier in a personal manner, as the main opposition party was offering responsible and constructive criticism.

    Following his arrival in Lavrio, Papandreou was given a guided tour of a new technological park in the one-time industrial district by the Athens Polytechnic's rector.

    Gov't reaction

    "It's obvious that in the face of a policy of reforms and structural changes being applied by the government, with the backing of a large majority of citizens, the only communications refuge for PASOK is (political) polarisation and distortion," government spokesman Theodoros Roussopoulos said in response to the PASOK leader's comments.

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