The government’s efforts to reach a deal with the Church of Greece have become the subject of a political battle between SYRIZA and New Democracy, which have also been trading accusations over alleged corruption scandals.
The Greek government moved a step closer on Thursday to securing the much sought-after goal of not having to implement next year the pension cuts it committed to in 2017.
Alexis Tsipras appears to be stepping up his efforts to anchor SYRIZA, which until recently boasted a radical leftist identity, within the group of European social democratic parties and, in the process, complete the transformation of his image from firebrand to mainstream politician.
The Greek government is encouraged about the prospects of reaching an agreement with the institutions on pension cuts this week as it continues its drive to legislate the so-called “positive measures.”
After the overwhelming approval in Parliament on Thursday for the transfer of 820 million euros in backpay to thousands of civil servants, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras sought to build on this momentum by focussing on imminent hirings in the public sector.
Alexis Tsipras tried on Thursday to capitalise on a vote in Parliament that would pave the way for thousands of uniformed personnel and other civil servants to receive some 800 million euros in backpay.
In an unexpected move, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras announced on Tuesday evening that the government has reached an agreement with the Church of Greece to settle a series of differences between the church and state, some of which date back decades.
New Democracy leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis made it clear on Tuesday that his party intends to block the government’s efforts to revise Greece’s constitution if Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras limits the process to just the articles that he is interested in changing and not a broader overhaul.
The coalition took on Monday the next step in pursuing former ministers over alleged healthcare scandals, a key element of the government’s pre-election toolbox.
The government came under attack on multiple fronts towards the end of this week as the opposition steps up its attempt to inflict damage on the coalition.