Greek debt crisis: Pro-Grexit group Popular Unity to take mandate to create Greek coalition as New Democracy misses deadline
Pro-Grexit group Popular Unity will formally receive a mandate to form a new Greek government today, prompting greater uncertainty around Europe's stability.
The mandate is being handed to the far-left group – the third largest in Greece's parliament – after opposition leader Vangelis Meimarakis admitted he had failed to find a coalition partner.
His conservative New Democracy party had been attempting to form a government after Alexis Tsipras surprise resignation last week, which is sending the country back to the polls after just seven months in power.
Popular Unity was formed when 25 members broke away from the ruling Syriza party. It is also expected to fail to put together a coalition within the three-day deadline, after which a caretaker government will be installed to arrange elections.
Party leader Panagiotis Lafazanis, who has previously spoken in support of a Grexit, is expected to be formally given the mandate at a meeting at 1pm local time.
Meimarakis accused Tsipras of taking Greece down a "destructive path" in the timing of his resignation.
“He has acknowledged in parliament that the Grexit ghost is still hovering over the country," Meimarakis said according to Reuters. "He thinks he can be the first party in the next parliament – I'm wondering with whom he wants to do this, since he doesn't want to see any of us again."
He is not the only politician to have openly criticised Tsipras for the manner of his exit. Last week Slovakian finance minster Peter Kazimir accused him of “cynical timing”, noting that it had come just hours after Greece received the first €13bn of its bailout funds.
Today's news comes as the country struggles with a growing migrant crisis as thousands of people fleeing Syria have become stranded between northern Greece and Macedonia. Reports claim that Macedonian military have fired on the refugees, and used stun grenades and tear gas to prevent them crossing the border, after a state of emergency was declared last week.
And it will add pressure to global stock markets, which are already suffering huge losses as fears of a slowdown in China prompt a global selloff.