Greece's austerity deals with Brussels and the International Monetary Fund are null and void because voters have rejected them, a left-wing party leader declared on Tuesday as he worked to form a new coalition government.
Alexis Tsipras, parliamentary head of the Radical Left Coalition (Syriza) that came second in Sunday's election, said: "There is no way we will sneak back in again what the Greek people threw out" in the election.
The electorate had rejected the hated pensions "reforms" and public sector and wage cuts that have slashed incomes since early 2010 and led to record high unemployment of over 21 per cent, he said.
Syriza won 16.8 per cent of the vote and 52 seats in the 300-member parliament.
The right-wing New Democracy came first with 108 seats and 18.9 per cent of the vote, but party leader Antonis Samaras failed to form a government on Monday.
The mandate then passed to Mr Tsipras, who said he would try to form a left-wing government that will "end the agreements of subservience" with Greece's creditors.
"The pro-bailout parties no longer have a majority to vote in destructive measures for the Greek people," he added. "This is a very important victory."
If he fails to build a government over the next three days, the mandate will pass to Evangelos Venizelos, head of the third-placed Panhellenic Socialist Movement. If he is also unsuccessful, party leaders will hold a last effort to reach consensus. If nothing comes from that, elections will take place within a month.
The Greek Communist Party (KKE) won 8 per cent in the elections. The central committee released a statement on Monday evening in which it said it won't support "any government resulting from the post-election collaboration."
The KKE predicted any new administration would "meet the needs and interests of capital, the choices of the EU and the IMF."
Any support for such a government would necessitate "unacceptable compromises," it said.
It called on working people and their allies to "co-operate with the KKE and the militant labour forces in the popular struggle to to relieve the sharpening problems, to repel the worst measures to come."
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