Pro-bailout parties lead in opinion polls ahead of Greek vote

Greece is headed for fresh elections on June 17 as no party won an outright majority in Greece`s May 6 election.

Zeenews Bureau

Athens: The chances of pro-bailout parties forming the government in Greece again, get higher as the conservatives are leading against the anti-bailout party ahead of the vote, a series of opinion polls suggested on Sunday.

Greece is headed for fresh elections on June 17 as no party won an outright majority in Greece`s May 6 election, leading to an impasse that has raised important questions on Greece’s ability to stay in Eurozone.

After the indecisive polls, Panagiotis Pikrammenos, the carateker prime minister, was appointed to lead the country to the June 17 elections.

So far, the pro-bailout New Democracy and anti-bailout Syriza have been racing closely but the conservatives seem to have gained small advantage.

According to the polls, New Democracy would get between 25.6 percent and 27.7 percent of the vote while Syriza would score between 20.1 and 26 percent.

Syriza, which came second in May 6 vote, insists that the draconian terms of Greece`s financial rescue agreements be scrapped or rewritten. They want Greece to keep the euro but ditch the bailout deal and the austerity measures that come with it.

But the New Democracy leader Antonio Samaras said it was impossible for Greece to remain in euro and do away with bailout deal simultaneously.

"If Greece unilaterally rejects the bailout deal it will be isolated for years ... It will have no food, no drugs, no fuel. It will have to live with permanent power cuts," Samaras said.

Germany and other members of euro alongwith IMF officials want Greece to stick to the bailout deal.

They have warned that they would halt country’s funding if Greece turned away from terms of bailout deal. That would result in Greece’s exit from the euro.

If conservatives manage to win the June 17 poll, they will still need allies to form a pro-bailout government as they have only a slight lead in the polls and they might not get the majority.

A pro-bailout government is pivotal to keeping the country in eurozone and may necessitate austerity measures to procure a $162bn bailout agreed with the European Union and the International Monetary Fund in March.

With Agency inputs