Monday, April 07, 2008

Papandreou: Outcome on FYROM name not decided

The outcome of the diplomatic "war" over the name of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) has not yet been decided, main opposition PASOK's leader George Papandreou asserted on Sunday, during an interview published by the Sunday version of the newspaper "Kathimerini". Papandreou urged the government to steadfastly hold its ground on the "national red line" that formed Greece's position on the issue.

Commenting on PASOK's stance, Papandreou stressed that the party had "fulfilled its role as main opposition with responsibility to the institutions" and said that his proposal to visit FYROM for talks with the leadership there was more timely than ever.

He stressed, meanwhile, that a possible recognition of Kosovo's independence by Greece would be a "dire mistake that we will find facing us".

On the domestic front, he commented on the possibility of cooperation between PASOK and the Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) party in Parliament, noting that such a 'grand coalition' was not in touch with Greek political reality while accusing SYRIZA for "remaining stuck in levelling two-fronted thinking and slipping into a political self-satisfaction".

Stressing that PASOK's goal was to achieve an autonomous majority in Parliament, he expressed hope that SYRIZA would "quickly recover from their giddiness and meet with us on the path of the broadest possible democratic and progressive cooperation".

He also criticised the agreement handing Deutsche Telecom a large tranche of Hellenic Telecommunications Organisation (OTE), saying the government's policy was not one of "privatisations but lessons in a kleptocratic mechanism".

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