SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

The World

November 6, 2011

Initial agreement reached in Greece power-sharing

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greece's embattled prime minister and the head of the main opposition party reached an initial agreement last night to form an interim government that will ensure the country's new European debt deal and then lead Greece to early elections, the president's office said.

The announcement came after President Karolos Papoulias chaired crisis talks between Prime Minister George Papandreou and opposition leader Antonis Samaras, capping a week of drama sparked by Papandreou's announcement he was taking the debt deal to a referendum. He withdrew the plan Thursday after intense opposition from European leaders and his own lawmakers.

The political turmoil had frayed nerves on international markets and seen Greece's cherished membership of Europe's joint currency come under threat. Greece is anxious to reach an agreement quickly on a new government, as it faces a meeting of eurozone finance ministers in Brussels on Monday.

Papandreou has already made clear he will not head the interim government, the president's announcement said, adding that there would be a meeting between the premier and Samaras on Monday to discuss who will act as interim prime minister and the makeup of the Cabinet. Papoulias also would chair a meeting of the heads of all political parties.

Faced with an open rebellion from his own Socialist lawmakers and mounting pressure to resign, Papandreou had said he would step aside if agreement could be reached on an interim government that would secure the new European debt deal and the disbursement of a vital bailout loan installment without which the country will default within weeks. He survived a confidence vote in his government Saturday.

For his part, Samaras had insisted he would only sit at the negotiating table if Papandreou resigned first, leading to a stalemate broken by Papoulias' calling both sides to the meeting.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
The World

AP Video
Today in History for July 24th Migrants Back in Honduras After US Deports Raw: ISS Cargo Ship Launches in Kazakhstan Bodies of MH17 Victims Arrive in the Netherlands US, UN Push Shuttle Diplomacy in Mideast Plane Crashes in Taiwan, Dozens Feared Dead Raw: Rescue Workers at Taiwan Plane Crash Site Raw: Mourners Gather As MH17 Bodies Transported Robot Parking Valet Creates Stress-free Travel Raw: MH17 Bodies Arrive in Netherlands Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Bodies of Malaysia Jet Victims Leave Ukraine Fighting Rages Amid Mideast Truce Push Raw: Secretary of State Kerry in Israel Clinton: "AIDS-Free Generation Within Our Reach" Raw: Typhoon Brings Heavy Wind, Rain to Taiwan Today in History for July 23rd Flight to Tel Aviv From US Diverted to Paris Raw: Massive Explosion in Gaza City Crash Victims' Remains Reach Ukraine-held City
NDN Video
LeBron James -- Dropped $2k On Cupcake Apology ... Proceeds To Benefit Charity Snoop Dogg Says He Smoked Weed at the White House Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Chris Pratt Interrupts Interview To French Braid Intern's Hair Shirtless Super Mario Balotelli Dances While Ironing - @TheBuzzeronFOX Whoa! Watch "Housewives" Star Do the Unthinkable LeBron apologizes to neighbors with cupcakes Justin Bieber In Calvin Klein Underwear Shoot Samsung Pre-Trolls The IPhone 6 With New Ad Jimmy Kimmel Introduces His Baby Girl Swim Daily, Nina Agdal in the Cook Islands Guilty Dog Apologizes to Baby for Stealing Her Toy Prince George Turns 1 and is Already a Trendsetter Train Collides With Semi Truck Carrying Lighter Fluid Kanye West Tells-All on Wedding in "GQ" Interview Tony Dungy Weighs in on Michael Sam Scarlett Johansson Set To Marry In August New Star Wars Episode XII X-Wing Revealed Obama: Putin must push separatists to aid MH17 probe Michigan inmates no longer allowed to wear orange due to 'OITNB'