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Greek main opposition leader insists on PM's resignation


08:36, November 07, 2011

ATHENS, Nov. 6 (Xinhua) -- Greek main opposition leader Antonis Samaras insisted on Sunday that Prime Minister George Papandreou should resign before any negotiations on a national coalition government.

"As long as the Premier does not resign, he blocks any steps forward according to Constitutional provisions. Only if he steps down, can things move forward," said Samaras, the head of the conservative New Democracy party, after his meeting with President Karolos Papoulias.

Samaras had rejected on Saturday Papandreou's call for the creation of such a government of broader consent, insisting on the formation of a short-term interim cabinet made of technocrats and the holding of early general elections in December.

"Everybody should undertake their responsibilities. We should send a message of stability and confidence to the Greek people and the international community," said Samaras.

"We should put an end to this pending situation that troubles Greek people and see how we can move ahead," said President Papoulias.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Papandreou rescheduled a cabinet meeting for later Sunday afternoon.

In statements to national broadcaster NET earlier on Sunday, government spokesman Elias Mossialos stressed that the prime minister has repeatedly stated his willingness to step down in the past few days.

"A new prime minister could be named either on Sunday or Monday and a new government could be formed before the end of the week," said Mossialos.

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