Leftist leader lays down plans for new government

Greek leftist leader Alexis Tsipras, who heads the Syriza Party, has laid down his agenda as part of his moves to form a new government. Tsipras wants to put a stop to austerity measures imposed by international lenders as part of the terms of the 130-B euro bailout from the European Union. These austerity measures include laws that cut pensions and salaries, and control over local banks. Greece’s parliamentary elections took place last Sunday, May 6, with seven parties securing seats in parliament but no party capturing more than 19% of the vote. Syriza Party came in second in the elections but may soon have a shot of forming a government, after the New Democracy party who came in first Sunday failed to form a coalition government on Monday. Politicians have until May 17 to form a working alliance, or another round of elections will be held. Tsipras called Syriza’s rise to power as a “message of a peaceful revolution”. A spokesperson for the European Commission, however, stressed that Greece needs to stand by the bailout terms, while New Democracy leader Antonis Samaras warned that the Syriza bloc could take Greece out of the eurozone.

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