Athens: Greek media on Tuesday said the country faced a stark choice in early elections next month between unpopular reforms demanded by the country`s EU-IMF creditors and `social salvation` promised by the radical left.
The snap ballot, the second in less than two years, came after lawmakers failed in a third attempt Monday to elect a successor to President Karolos Papoulias, whose five-year term ends in March.
It would be "an electoral period of tough political dilemmas", according to liberal Kathimerini daily.
"The elections nobody wanted, held in a climate of uncertainty," said centre-left Ta Nea.
Avgi, the daily of the radical leftist Syriza party, said a leftist government would give "hope to the peoples of Europe and nightmares to the elites oppressing them."
Greek stocks closed down almost four percent on Monday -- having lost a massive 11 percent earlier -- amid fears that the front-running Syriza party could roll back austerity measures if it does win the election.
The bourse opened with a fresh 0.51-percent drop on Tuesday.
Syriza had dismissed warnings that its electoral programme could shake the markets but, within hours of the election call on Monday, the International Monetary Fund said it was suspending further bailout payments to Greece until a new government was formed.
Prime Minister Antonis Samaras was due to formally ask Papoulias to dissolve parliament on Tuesday.