Greek Anti-Austerity Party Holds Lead before Sunday Elections
TEHRAN (Tasnim) - Greece's leftist Syria party held onto its opinion poll lead as it campaigns to form the first euro zone government committed to scrapping austerity outright after elections this weekend.
With the fate of Greece's 240-billion-euro bailout from the European Union and IMF unclear, Syriza leader Alexis Tsipras rejected any suggestion that Athens was under pressure to come to terms with its creditors by the end of next month.
All polls show Syriza in the lead and inching towards the numbers needed for outright victory as its message of cancelling austerity and securing a debt write-off attracts Greeks hit by four years of wage and pension cuts, Reuters reported.
"Light has won over darkness. Victory and a majority are within our grasp," Tsipras told supporters at his final campaign rally in Crete.
Among the final surveys published before Sunday's snap election, two showed Syriza's lead over the conservative New Democracy Party of Prime Minister Antonis Samaras widening, while another showed it narrowing slightly.
According to an Alco poll, Syriza has 32.9 percent support, giving it a 6.6 point lead - up from 5.2 points in a survey by the same pollster on Wednesday. Surveys by Kapa research and MRB for Star TV put the difference between the parties at 2.9 and 5.2 points respectively.
Greece took the bailout in two stages from 2010 after plunging into a debt crisis which took it to the brink of bankruptcy, casting doubt on its membership of the euro zone and the very future of the monetary union.
The economy has pulled out of its free-fall but the chance of a victory by Syriza has again raised tensions on financial markets and with other euro zone governments. While some European leaders have called for policies promoting growth, they have not done away entirely with austerity as Syriza promises to do.