Papoulias convincingly re-elected Greek president

20:18, February 03, 2010      

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Greek President Karolos Papoulias was re-elected to a second term by parliament with an overwhelming majority, Parliament President Philipos Petsalnikos announced here Wednesday.

Papoulias won 266 votes in the 300-seat parliament, with 298 lawmakers in attendance.

The 80-year-old incumbent was backed by the ruling Panhellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK), main opposition New Democracy (ND) and smaller opposition Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS) parties.

Lawmakers of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) and the Coalition of the Radical Left did not vote for the incumbent, but simply declared themselves present when called in the roll-call vote during a special session Wednesday.

Papoulias will be sworn in for his second term on March 12.

Born in 1929, Papoulias was a former government minister and member of parliament.

He is the sixth president of the Republic since the restoration of democracy in Greece in 1974, following Mihalis Stasinopoulos, Constantine Tsatsos, Constantine Karamanlis, Christos Sartzetakis and Costis Stephanopoulos.

Under the Constitution, a two-thirds majority (200 votes) of the parliament is required for the election of a president of the Republic in the first sitting. If the parliament fails to elect a president in the first sitting, a run-off election will be held five days later, requiring the same amount of votes. If it fails again, a third vote will be held after another five days when three-fifths of the votes (180) is required.

Source: Xinhua
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