Parliament approves omnibus bill despite “no” from main opposition

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Parliament approved early on Saturday the multi-bill of measures needed for Greece to receive its next bailout sub-tranche.

A total of 154 MPs voted for the legislation, which included raising the retirement age, while 140 voted against as all three opposition parties that backed the third bailout in the summer – New Democracy, PASOK and To Potami – refused to support the omnibus bill.

Only lawmakers from the two governing parties, SYRIZA and Independent Greeks, voted for the legislation. However, SYRIZA MP Vassiliki Katrivanou was absent from the ballot, meaning the government fell one short of its five-seat majority.

Earlier, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras Tsipras accused New Democracy, PASOK and Potami, which backed the third bailout during summer votes, of opportunism.

“There are no new measures, there are just difficult measures that we all knew about when we voted for the agreement in August,” the premier said.

“What exactly are you pretending to be today? Against the memorandum? For five years you agreed to do whatever the lenders told you without negotiating.”

Inspectors from the European Commission, European Central Bank, euro zone rescue fund and International Monetary Fund are expected in Athens at the end of October to assess progress on Greece’s third rescue package.

Athens wants to conclude the review and recapitalise its banks quickly, to secure fresh aid and talks on debt relief. But it must first enact a long list of reforms detailed in the 86-billion-euro bailout plan.

EKATHIMERINI

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