Alexis Tsipras to have exploratory meeting with Karolos Papoulias

Alexis Tsipras to have exploratory meeting with Karolos Papoulias


By Spiros Sideris – Athens

Leader of the Greek main opposition Alexis Tsipras will have an exploratory meeting with Greek President Karolos Papoulias today at noon, after a request from the former to visit the President of the Republic.

According to reports, the president of SYRIZA is expected to update the country’s first citizen for the positions of his party on all current political issues. The focus of the meeting will be the expressed position of SYRIZA to not recognise any government agreements with the lenders, before the next national elections.

Meanwhile, according to the same information, Tsipras will attempt to examine the intentions of Karolos Papoulias regarding the time of the proceedings of the presidential election. Namely, if he would be willing to consent to being moved before February, if requested by the government.

The meeting between Alexis Tsipras and the President of the Republic was held the day after the European elections last May. The relationship between the two remains consistently good, since Tsipras has given explicit orders to his party officials to leaving the President of the Republic, out of the government’s “games” for the presidential election.

In SYRIZA they stay vigilant, since they consider that the ND-PASOK coalition seeing that it cannot reverse the unfavorable political situation, attempts to complicate and shorten the life of the next government, putting forward the “left parenthesis” plan. This is the meaning of the universal reaction of the opposition to the government’s target for the EUR 11.5 billion of the FSF. Money that SYRIZA sees as necessary for the implementation of key announcements.

At the same time, in SYRIZA, they are seriously considering the possibility of early action at the ballot box, on the occasion of the forthcoming evaluation by the troika – if the troika comes to Greece – as the lenders exert pressure, leaking that the agreed Memorandum “reforms” are not being implemented.

The measures that the government will have to take, according to SYRIZA, will be just as hard, and if they are ultimately imposed by the Troika as a condition to come to Athens and the payment of the next tranche, then logically, SYRIZA sees intergovernmental creaks in November that will possibly push Antonis Samaras and Evangelos Venizelos in a heroic “exit” holding an anti-troika flag.

This fact, even as a possibility, hastens the necessity to rapidly establish the ballots in an atmosphere of camaraderie and low controversy, as the members of PASOK who appear willing to join the party of the Left, are causing irritation to a large portion of the party base of SYRIZA. At this stage, all the names of the former PASOK MPs who have distanced themselves from the Memorandum past, and are now in the group of the independent, are expecting SYRIZA to open its “doors”.

It is doubtful, however, whether all these MPs will be included on the lists, since it is certain that there will be strong disagreement from the Left Platform of Panagiotis Lafazanis, which is the main intraparty opposition to Alexis Tsipras. This means that apparently the same situation will be repeated, as in the staffing of the euro-ballot, with many names circulating but then “burned” until the ballots are formed with mutual concessions from the two major party wings.

The government’s view, moreover, does not leave much room for extensive intraparty conflict, which on the most part will be tactical in nature.