Greek opposition party's members vote for president

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Saturday, November 10, 2007

Electoral kiosk of PASOK party in Athens.

PASOK (Pan-Hellenic Socialist Movement) party members and voters will decide tomorrow for party's president, in a wide election throughout Greece. Almost one million party members, voters and friends of PASOK will gather in selected ballot boxes in all the main cities of the country to vote for party's leader, after the defeat of September 16, 2007, in the national elections.

The three candidates for PASOK's presidency are the current president - and president of the Socialist International, George Papandreou, the MP and former Minister Dr.Evangelos Venizelos and the former Secretary of the party Kostas Skandalides. Until now, opinion polls show that Papandreou leads the presidential race with around 2%-6% difference from Venizelos, but political analysts remain unsure in their predictions about the result of the elections.

Yesterday, the candidates concluded their pre-election campaigns with public speeches in Athens, Thessaloniki and Kos respectively. Mr.Papandreou delivered a speech in Peristeri, west Athens while Mr.Venizelos organized a political fiesta with over 5,000 supporters of him, in his hometown Thessaloniki. Skandalides ended his campaign in his birthplace, the island of Kos.

PASOK, founded by the popular politician Andreas Papandreou in 1974, was in government from 1981 to 1989 and from 1993 to 2004, dominating most of the modern Greek politics. Last September, the party was defeated in the 2007 parliamentary elections from the conservative New Democracy. Since then criticism and challenge on George Papandreou's leadership, by prominent members of PASOK such as Mr.Venizelos, has been increased


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