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Narrow Labour win

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Issue 1692

Greece

Narrow Labour win

PASOK, THE Greek equivalent of the Labour Party, was narrowly re-elected in the general election on Sunday. The party, led by prime minister Costas Simitis, won 43.6 percent of votes to 43.1 percent for New Democracy, the Greek Tories. New Democracy has been able to build out of dissatisfaction with the last four years of PASOK rule. Simitis has tried to push through pro-market policies, and backed the US-led war against Serbia last year even though 95 percent of people were against the bombing.

Simitis would have lost the election if he had continued pushing New Labour style policies. He was forced to come out with traditional “Old Labour” rhetoric in the weeks before the election. The combined vote of the Greek Communist Party and two other parties to the left of PASOK fell compared with the Euro elections last year, as working class voters swung behind Simitis to keep the Tories out.

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