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Greek conservatives win first post bailout general elections

Xinhua | Updated: 2019-07-08 03:33
Greek Prime Minister and Syriza party leader Alexis Tsipras leaves the podium after his speech at Zappeion Hall in Athens on Sunday. Tsipras conceded defeat in Greece's first parliamentary election since the country emerged from its international bailouts. [Photo/IC]

ATHENS -- Greece's main opposition conservative New Democracy (ND) party wins Sunday's general elections garnering 39.8 percent of votes against 31.6 percent for the ruling Radical Left SYRIZA party, according to estimates based on the first official results announced by the Interior Ministry on national broadcaster ERT.

Greeks went to the polls on Sunday to choose their first parliament since the debt-laden country emerged from the bailout era in August 2018.

According to the early projections by the Interior Ministry, six parties will most probably enter the new parliament, clearing the three percent threshold needed under Greece's electoral law.

ND will win an outright majority with 154-158 seats and SYRIZA about 86 seats.

In the September 2015 elections, SYRIZA had won 36 percent and 145 seats and formed a two-partite ruling coalition and ND 28 percent of votes and 75 seats.

According to the estimates on the official results the centrist Movement for Change (Kinima Allagis-KINAL) gets 8.3 percent of votes and the Greek Communist Party (KKE) 5.3 percent.

The ultra-Right Chryssi Avghi (Golden Dawn) is expected to garner 2.96 percent of votes, failing to enter the parliament for first time since its debut in the 2012 national elections.

MeRA 25 (Day 25), an anti-austerity party founded by former Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis is estimated to receive 3.4 percent of votes and the newly founded Right-wing nationalistic Greek Solution (Elliniki Lysi) 3.7 percent of votes.

A total of 20 parties competed in this Sunday's electoral battle, the third in less than two months.

ND's clear victories in May's European parliament elections and June's local government elections forced Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to head to early general elections, three months before the expiry of his government's term in office.

The final official results are expected to be announced on Monday.

Also on Monday, Mitsotakis is due to formally get a mandate to form a government by the President of the Greek Republic and be sworn in as new Prime Minister.

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