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Athens News Agency: News in English, 12-02-09

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

CONTENTS

  • [01] PM, party leaders agree "on all points except one"
  • [02] Samaras:'Negotiations are continuing'

  • [01] PM, party leaders agree "on all points except one"

    AMNA--Prime minister Lucas Papademos and the leaders of the three political parties supporting his interim government agreed on all points of a 130 billion euro second bailout package for Greece except one, the thorny issue of auxiliary pensions, during a marathon nearly 8-hour deliberation that lasted until 1:00 a.m. Thursday, after which Papademos held yet another critical meaning with the heads of the European Commission (EC), European Central Bank (ECB and International Monetary Fund (IMF) troika.

    "The prime minister and the political leaders examined in depth the content of the new economic programme that accompanies the economic support of the country in the coming years and agreed on all the points with the exception of one, which requires further processing and discussion with the Troika," an announcement issued at 1:00 a.m. by Papademos' press office said after a 7 1/2 hours of talks.amna

    The announcement said that the discussion on the one outstanding issue would take place with the troika immediately afterwards (after the deliberations with the party leaders), so that the agreement may be completed in view of a Eurogroup extraordinary meeting on Greece scheduled for 7:00 on Thursday afternoon in Brussels.

    According to sources, the three party leaders -- PASOK leader and former prime minister George Papandreou, New Democracy (ND) leader Antonis Samaras and Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS) leader George Karatzaferis -- authorised Papademos to negotiate with the troika the alternative solutions on the thorny issue of cuts in auxiliary salaries.

    [02] Samaras:'Negotiations are continuing'

    AMNA--New Democracy (ND) leader Antonis Samaras said in the first hours of Thursday that "the negotiation is continuing", after a marathon meeting between prime minister Lucas Papademos and the leaders of the three political parties supporting his interim government, who agreed on all points of a 130 billion euro second bailout package for Greece except one, the thorny issue of auxiliary pensions.

    Speaking at about 1:30 a.m. outside the party headquarters in Athens, Samaras said that "the negotiation is continuing, there is one more issue, regarding the pensions".

    "I know that for some, it is unprecedented that they are negotiating, and engaging in tough negotiations at that," Samaras said, adding: "We must look out for the everyday people, we must negotiate, this is a national stance, a conscientious stance, a stance that everyone must have in hours of crisis, and I don't care if some people misunderstand that stance."amna

    "Things are tough and we are making an effort in order for the people to hurt less," Samaras added, explaining that by pensions, he was referring to all the pensions.

    According to sources, the party leaders' meeting was discontinued following persistence by Samaras against an across-the-board cut in auxiliary pensions, and that the problem is not rolled over to the main pensions.


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