Greek PM Urges Lawmakers to Adopt Austerity Package
Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras on Sunday called on members of the country's parliament to support the 2013 budget and austerity package, needed to secure another bailout tranche, and "save the country from disaster."

"We must save the country from disaster," Samaras said at a meeting with lawmakers of his New Democracy party.

"There will be no further cuts in salaries and pensions, it will be the last time we are cutting the [budget] deficit," he said.
The parliament is expected to pass the package with a slim majority on Wednesday. A simple majority of 151 "yes" votes in the 300-seat parliament is required.

The three-party ruling coalition, which controls 175 seats, is split ahead of the vote as one member of the coalition, The Democratic Party, refused to support the package. The party has 16 seats in parliament.

Samaras is due to meet with Democratic Party leader Fotis Kouvelis ahead of the vote in a bid to persuade him to change his mind.
Next Sunday, lawmakers should also approve the 2013 budget in order to receive more aid funds from the International Monetary Fund and European Union.

Meanwhile, trade unions have stepped up their pressure on the government, announcing a general 48-hour strike on November 6-7. (Cihan/Ria Novosti)

Last Modified: 2012-11-05 14:00:02
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