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The government by June 2010 will present for discussion a new proposal on the right of the Greek expatriates to vote from their places of residence and until then a new round of dialogue will take place with the political parties, Interior Minister Prokopis Pavlopoulos announced.

The interior minister’s statement brings up again the issue of the Greek expatriate vote that “froze” after the relevant draft law was rejected by most of the opposition political parties when it was presented in Parliament last April.

The interior minister in statements he made after the meeting of the Kefallonia and Ithaki expatriates clarified that the new draft law will be within the framework of voting participation and not representation as suggested by PASOK, SYRIZA and SAE. The government proposes the inclusion of three representatives of the Omogenia in each party’s ballot with candidates that do not receive a cross of preference in order to be elected (epikratias). Their placement at the top places of the list, which will ensure their election, is not mandatory.

Main opposition MP Michalis Chrisochoidis, who attended the meeting on Kefallonia, stressed that PASOK supports the voting rights of the Greek expatriates but under preconditions which were not met by the government.

On behalf of SYRIZA, MP Grigoris Psarianos stated that his party is positive toward the voting rights of the expatriates but he requested setting specific electoral districts while suggesting the election of specific number of local candidates.

The interior minister praised the stance adopted by SAE stressing that “the expatriate organization supports the voting of the draft law presented, realizing that it will make the relevant command of the Constitution a reality, regardless of the fact that it had expressed and continues to support a different position from those included in the draft law.”

Source: Ethnikos Kirikas

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