Greek presidency says new legislative elections to be held June 25

AFP , Monday 29 May 2023

The Greek presidency said Monday the country will hold fresh elections on June 25, as Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis seeks to consolidate his gains in national elections that still left it short of a parliamentary majority.

Greek President Katerina Sakelaropoulou
File Photo: Greek President Katerina Sakelaropoulou (C) at a meeting with Prime Minister and New Democracy leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis (5-L), and other party leaders at the Presidental Palace in Athens on May 24, 2023. Greek main parties leaders held a formal meeting with Greek president, in a bid to agree on a caretaker government pending new elections. AFP


"New elections will be held on June 25," a presidential decree said, after Mitsotakis's conservative New Democracy party had its best result since 2007 with 40.8 percent of the vote in the May 21 elections.

It was a win over the leftist Syriza party of former premier Alexis Tsipras by more than 20 points.

Despite the landslide victory, Mitsotakis was still five seats short of being able to produce a single-party government in the 300-deputy parliament, and declined the option of forming a coalition.

Under a new electoral law that comes into play in the next ballot, the winner can obtain a bonus of up to 50 seats, facilitating the goal of securing a majority of at least 151 lawmakers.

In power over the last four years, former McKinsey consultant Mitsotakis, a scion of one of Greece's most powerful political families, steered the country through the pandemic which devastated its vital tourism industry.

Mitsotakis' term was blighted, however, by a wiretapping scandal as well as a train crash that killed 57 people in February.

Nevertheless, neither the accident nor the scandal appears to have dented support for his conservatives, who scored a far bigger win than that predicted by opinion polls ahead of the vote.

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