Polls close in Greek snap elections

Opinion polls show left-wing Syria party in lead after election polls close

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Former Greek prime minister and leader of leftist Syriza party Alexis Tsipras arrives to vote for the general election at a polling station in Athens, Greece

Greeks voted on Sunday to choose new government for their country less than a year after elections in January that brought the leftist Syriza party to power with 36.34 percent of the vote, followed by the New Democracy block at 27.81 percent.

According to opinion polls, millions of Greek voters were undecided before Sunday’s polls.

The first of exit polls show that Syriza leads but the second political party New Democracy are close.

According to Mega TV, Syriza is between 30% and 34% of the vote. Syriza’s rival conservative New Democracy is between 28.5% and 32.5% of the vote, the Guardian reports.

Another poll that conducted by The University of Macedonia, Syriza leads by between 31% and 35%, followed by the centre-right New Democracy on 29% to 31%.

According to TV channel ERT, Syriza: 30 - 34.8%, New Democracy: 28 - 32%, Golden Dawn: 6.5 - 8%, Pasok: 5.5 - 7%, KKE: 5.5% - 7%, To Potami: 4% – 5.5% Popular Unity: 2.5 – 3.5%, Centrists’ Union: 3.2 - 4.2%, Independent Greeks (ANEL) 3 - 4%, the Guardian reports.

Both leaders Tsipras and Meimarakis finished their campaigns on Saturday.

Nine parties are competing to enter the parliament, however whichever wins the most seats is unlikely to be able form a majority government and will likely need to form a coalition.

Tsipras accepted a Eurozone bailout package after 61 percent of Greek voters in a July referendum voted in a landslide against a previous offer that maintained austerity measures.

Tsipras resigned in August after the bailout crisis split his ruling party, leading to Sunday’s snap election.

While Tsipras’ supporters say that he went down fighting, rival party leader Meimarakis identified his seven months as ruling party leader as "an experiment that cost the country dearly."

Tsipras lost the support of 39 of his party's 149 parliamentarians when he agreed to Greece’s third bailout agreement on July 16.

In a television debate on Monday, he expressed hope regarding the upcoming election.

He has said that "In the previous election we got 149 [seats in parliament], when there was a danger of leaving the euro. Now that that danger is gone … we can get the two extra MPs we need."

TRTWorld and agencies