Greece parliament fails to elect president

Parliament fails for third time to elect a president forcing early elections in the coming weeks.

    Greece's parliament has failed to elect a new president for the country in a third and final round of voting, forcing an early general elections.

    Stavros Dimas, former European commisioner and the coalition government's candidate for the post, fell short of the 180 votes of parliament's 300 seats needed to win on Monday.

    "I think I expected the result. I remain calm, as ever," said Dimas. 

    Shortly after the vote, Antonis Samaras, Greek prime minister, said the country would hold the polls on January 25.

    Some fear the elections could endanger the debt-ridden country's international bailout as opinion polls have consistently shown the left-wing main opposition Syriza party ahead. The party opposes the terms of the bailout deals which kept Greece from defaulting on its debts.

    Syriza has pledged to roll back some of the reforms implemented in order for the country to qualify for billions of euros in rescue funds from other eurozone countries and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) - although it has recently somewhat softened its rhetoric about unilaterally pulling out of the bailout deal.

    Greece recently secured a two-month extension from its EU-IMF creditors to conclude an ongoing fiscal audit that will determine the release of about $8.6bn in loans. This extension expires in February.

    Investors reacted badly to parliament's vote, with the Athens stock exchange's benchmark general index down 10.8 percent in midday trading minutes after the vote.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Why some African Americans are moving to Africa

    Escaping systemic racism: Why I quit New York for Accra

    African-Americans are returning to the lands of their ancestors as life becomes precarious and dangerous in the USA.

    What happens when the US government shuts down?

    The US government has shut down. What happens next?

    US federal government begins partial shutdown after Senate blocks short-term spending bill. What happens next?

    Why is the West praising Malala, but ignoring Ahed?

    Why is the West praising Malala, but ignoring Ahed?

    Is an empowered Palestinian girl not worthy of Western feminist admiration?