Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras sprung a surprise on Thursday evening, when he announced that the government plans to redistribute this year’s primary surplus overperformance to some of those who have been affected most by the crisis.
SYRIZA’s awkward symbiosis with its coalition partner, Independent Greeks (ANEL), has come to the fore again this week.
There was a fairly subdued reaction from the government to the outcome of Monday’s Eurogroup, although the coalition did turn its fire on the International Monetary Fund and indicated it would strive to avoid having to agree any new measures now.
Thursday’s agreement between Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci to resume talks appears a pre-cursor to a flurry of activity on the Cyprus issue ahead of the conference that will include the guarantor powers on January 12.
Another day and another set of worrying poll results for the government, which despite the negative data will be more concerned with escalating tension with Turkey.
Seeing the government still struggling to conclude the second review, which has prompted speculation about whether this could lead to political developments, New Democracy has chosen to make it absolutely clear that it will not consent to a cross-party administration being formed and to reiterate its call for snap elections.
As Greece waits to see the outcome of the ongoing talks with its lenders, the general sense of dissatisfaction among voters was highlighted in a new opinion poll published on Wednesday.
Two of the key players in the negotiations over Greece’s second programme review expressed some optimism on Tuesday that an agreement between Athens and its lenders could be reached in the next few days.
There was no sign from the Greek government on Monday that it plans to back down in the impasse that has emerged during talks with the institutions aimed at concluding the second review.
Two people were killed and another two seriously injured in a fire apparently caused by a cooking accident at the Moria refugee camp on Lesvos, highlighting the continuing challenges the Greek government faces in dealing with the refugee crisis and increasing the pressure on Athens at a time when it is fearful of migrants arriving in larger numbers.