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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 13-03-01

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

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] 'This is a new PASOK,' Venizelos tells opening convention

  • [01] 'This is a new PASOK,' Venizelos tells opening convention

    AMNA -- Issuing a personal invitation to unity, self-confidence and continuing struggle to all, party leader Evangelos Venizelos asked them to join the efforts to re-establish PASOK and to help the country exit the crisis, in his opening speech at the PASOK congress in Faliro, southwest of Athens, on Friday.

    Venizelos also appealed to all those who left PASOK in the two election rounds last summer to return to what he termed "their home base."

    Trying to differentiate his party's position from the ruling New Democracy party and PASOK's junior partner in the ruling coalition, the Democratic Left (DIMAR) party, Venizelos said that "we are not identifying in terms of values and ideology with the former" while he appealed to the latter and other central-left movements to join PASOK in future elections.amna

    At the same time, PASOK's leader reiterated the need of updating the three coalition parties' agreement and said PASOK did not entrust its own strategy to other parties, criticising those who, terming it a "right-wing strategy" believed that its strategy "should be left to the right to apply."

    Stating his opposition to early elections and the fall of government, Venizelos said PASOK would be the first to be held responsible in such an event. "We are not playing small-minded political games or internal games with the fate of this country and people," he noted.

    Venizelos spoke of "a new PASOK, a new party, with institutions, views, trends, no groupings and old mechanisms, collective instead of leader-focused, participatory, collaboratively thinking, with social networks and volunteers." This party he said "is not a small copy of the old PASOK... we must create a new relationship of trust among us and especially with society."

    Addressing the opposition parties, especially main opposition Radical Left Coalition (SYRIZA), Venizelos asked, "What does it believe this country needs, SYRIZA's independence, or a government based on cooperation?" The main opposition's decision not to participate in the ruling coalition is its own decision, he said, "but we would like SYRIZA to show itself to be a force of national responsibility." PASOK does not consider the main opposition party to be part of the centre-left, he said, and its opposition was focused on SYRIZA's leadership, not the party base.amna


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