Greek Prime Minister 'Expected to Step Down'

Story tools

A A AResize


George Papandreou, Greece's prime minister, is expected to resign as soon as a deal for an interim coalition government is agreed, perhaps as early as Sunday night, a senior member from his party said.

The main goal, duration and leader of such an administration must be agreed before Papandreou resigns, PASOK party politician Telemachos Hitiris told Greek state television on Sunday.

"We only have to wait for the prime minister's announcements in the cabinet," he said. "Everything must be done within the day, otherwise tomorrow it will be hell."

Al Jazeera's Jonah Hull, reporting from Athens, described the matter of Papandreou's resignation as "political horseplay," explaining that "the leader of the opposition is insisting that he won't even start [coalition] talks until Papandreou resigns. Papandreou is saying he will...resign after they're concluded."

Papandreou has come under fire at home and abroad for his shortlived plan to let Greek voters decide on the Eurozone bailout deal.

He survived a confidence vote in parliament on Saturday, but politicians from his party have called on him to quit.

Hitiris said elections should be held after Greece meets its obligations to Eurozone partners, pinning the timing to around January or February.