The difficulties that Alexis Tsipras will face in the coming weeks and months, while trying to govern with what is essentially a minority government, are already becoming evident.
After the government’s charm offensive in the wake of the Prespes Agreement, centred on the increase to the minimum wage and the bond issue, New Democracy is attempting to wrestle back the initiative as it begins to announce its list of candidates for the next elections.
The increase in the minimum wage announced on Monday by Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras beat expectations and confirmed that SYRIZA intends to pull out all the stops in order to boost its chances in the upcoming elections.
The Prespes Agreement, which aims to settle an almost 30-year dispute between Athens and Skopje by leading to Greece’s neighbour to change its name to North Macedonia, was approved by Greek Parliament on Friday.
The vote on the Prespes Agreement is due to take place at around 14.30 on Friday after extra time was allowed on Thursday because of the high number of MPs who had asked to speak during the debate.
The debate on the Prespes Agreement began in Greek Parliament on Wednesday, with New Democracy pondering whether to delay the procedure by submitting a censure motion.
Parliament is due to vote on the Prespes Agreement on Thursday amid an increasingly fraught political environment that is putting huge pressure on Greece’s smaller parties.
The imminent vote on the Prespes Agreement and the disturbances that overshadowed Sunday’s rally against the name deal have ratcheted up political tension in Greece.
Alexis Tsipras appears to be on course to secure a clear majority in Parliament for the Prespes Agreement as at least some MPs from centrist To Potami are poised to vote in favour of the deal.
Alexis Tsipras clinched the 151 votes he was looking for in the confidence vote held in Greek Parliament late on Wednesday and now faces the challenge of repeating the trick in the upcoming vote on the Macedonia name deal.