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ORIGINAL FRENCH ARTICLE: Exclusivité : Le KKE refuse de rencontrer Syriza

by Fabien Perrier

Exclusive! KKE Refuses to Meet With Syriza

Translated Wednesday 9 May 2012, by Gene Zbikowski and reviewed by Henry Crapo

Athens, from our special correspondent. The Central Committee of the KKE, the Greek Communist Party, has refused to meet with the leader of the Syriza coalition, made up of different left formations including Synaspismos [1].

The Greek President has charged Alexis Tsipras, the leader of the coalition that came in second in the May 6 legislative elections, with forming a government. The party that came in first, New Democracy (ND), led by Antonis Samaras, has failed to form a government.

The KKE usually came in ahead of Syriza in elections. However, the outcome of these elections is that Syriza, which tripled its score at the ballot box, obtained 16.78% of the vote while the KKE obtained 8.48%.

Alexis Tsipras has regularly come out in favor of a progressive left coalition uniting all of the anti-memoranda forces. The KKE has refused all efforts to reach out to it. An additional step has been taken with this rejection of even the principle of a meeting between the Syriza leader and the national secretary of the KKE, Aleka Papariga.

According to the information we have received, and which has been confirmed by the KKE in a telephone interview, this decision was taken on May 8 by the Central Committee, despite the election earthquake of May 6 and the political crisis that has followed.

Thus the KKE is pursuing its strategy of going it alone, whereas the economic crisis and the austerity measures in force in the country are leading to a considerable decline in the daily life of the Greeks. In October 2009, unemployment stood at 9.8%; it now stands at 21.8%. The minimum wage has been axed by 22%, and even by 32% for the under-25s.

[1translator’s note: Synaspismos, the Coalition of Left Movements and Ecology, is a radical new left party.

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