| 14 April 2024, Sunday |

Greek conservatives storm to victory in repeat election

Greece’s conservative New Democracy party stormed to victory in a parliamentary election on Sunday, early official results showed, with voters giving reformist Kyriakos Mitsotakis another four-year term as prime minister.

With about a quarter of votes counted, centre-right New Democracy was leading with 40.5 percent of the vote, interior ministry figures showed.

It was more than 20 points clear of Syriza, a radical leftist party which won elections in 2015 at the peak of a debilitating debt crisis and which ran the country until 2019, when it lost to New Democracy.

“Obviously this is a great defeat,” Euclid Tsakalotos, who was finance minister under the Syriza administration, told Greece’s Skai TV.

Sunday’s vote is the second in the past five weeks, as a first poll on May 21, held under a different electoral system, failed to give a single party absolute majority in the 300-seat parliament. The system used in Sunday’s poll gives the leading party bonus seats depending on voter support.

With 60% of the votes counted, Mitsotakis was likely to get 157 seats in the 300-seat parliament, interior ministry data showed.

Mitsotakis, who was prime minister from 2019 until stepping down in favour of a caretaker premier following the inconclusive May vote, has vowed to push ahead with reforms to rebuild the country’s credit rating after the debt crisis which wracked the nation for a decade.

A former banker and scion of a powerful political family, Mitsotakis has promised to boost revenue from the vital tourist industry, create jobs and increase wages to near the European Union average.

  • Reuters