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Greek PM Mitsotakis rules out snap elections

At the anniversary of one year in power, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis ruled out early elections. Speaking to Skai TV, the prime minister ruled out the prospect of early elections, saying they will be held at the end of the government’s four-year term.

It would be “politically dishonest” to hold snap elections to exploit the current “political capital”, he added

Mitsotakis said that imposing the lockdown was the hardest decision that he took in his first year as prime minister, “once we had the data and were ability to perceive the problem posed by the coronavirus.”

He said the decision was hard because he was aware it would lead the economy to a deep recession “but I did the calculation and hope I’m proved right, that the more effective we were in tackling the pandemic, the easier the economic recovery will be.”

The first battle was won but the epidemic was not yet over, the prime minister said, adding that the country was now stronger than before in spite of the recession “because it has institutional capital and faith in its capability, the self-confidence to cope.” This was reflected in opinion polls, Mitsotakis said, noting that he mainly focused on their ‘qualitative’ findings rather than voter intentions.

The next most difficult decision was that to ease the curbs for Covid-19 and reopen the economy while protecting public health, since that required a great deal of work, planning and cooperation between many individuals and agencies.

Greece has proved that it is capable of carrying out such difficult tasks, he said, adding that July will be a difficult month for Greek tourism but he was confident that foreign tourists will see that Greece is dealing with the problem professionally and will prefer to holiday here. The borders with any country where there is a flare-up of coronavirus will be closed, he said.

On the refugee crisis at the Greek-Turkish land border in Evros, Mitsotakis noted that the decision to defend the border was ‘self-evident’ and that the government had information on what would happen.

Mitsotakis said that the government has a 47-page document outlining its work in all sectors and by ministry during the first year of ruling New Democracy’s governance.

“Leaps of progress have been made in Greece in just one year and these have not happened by accident. They are the result of hard work with the support of the entire society,” he said.

PS Public opinion polls may show New Democracy 14%-18% ahead of main opposition SYRIZA, but Mitsotakis is not stupid. Which Prime Minister would go to snap elections when the European Commission projects recession of 9% for 2020, and thousands of people are still depend on 534-euro Pandemic Aid, many are underpaid, catering businesses and tourist facilities incl. hotels are considering to close down again and unemployment is expected to skyrocket?

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