Athens: Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras on Wednesday was caught swearing on camera as he fumbled a long-awaited announcement on tax relief.
"Fuck me, what a wanker," Samaras said, apparently referring to himself, as he walked away from his podium in frustration before attempting to read the statement again.
The excerpt, apparently from unedited raw footage of the announcement, was broadcast by private Skai TV and rapidly picked up by other media.
"Communications gaffe cracks viewers up," said leftist Eleftherotypia daily.
Samaras` announcement was on the long-awaited cut of sales tax on restaurants from 23 per cent to 13 per cent.
Greece had been asking its EU-IMF creditors for months for permission to reduce the tax in order to boost sales during the tourist season.
The government hopes concessions from its creditors will reduce public anger over a fourth straight year of cuts.
The Greek parliament was due to vote on another austerity bill later today.
"I had undertaken to achieve this first great tax reduction for months," Samaras said in the announcement, adding: "It was not easy."