Diko leader Nicolas Papadopoulos and the Greens’ Giorgos Perdikis agreed that the two parties share views on the main issues and want to join forces ahead of next year’s presidential election, it was announced on Friday.
Speaking after a meeting of the two parties’ delegations, Papadopoulos said Diko desires and pursues cooperation with the Green Party.
In what sounded like a pledge to hand the party relevant posts in the next government, Papadopoulos said Diko acknowledges the Green Party as experts on matters of ecology, environment, and sustainable development.
“The meeting with the Green Party’s leadership was a useful and constructive one, since we share common concerns and views on issues, as well as attitudes toward a solution of the Cyprus problem,” Papadopoulos said.
“Today’s meeting concludes our deliberations with regard to the upcoming presidential election. We will now assess the circumstances and make our own decisions as to the way forward.”
The aim, Papadopoulos said, remains to replace the current government, which “we believe has failed”.
“We seek to change Cyprus, through elections, for the better, we seek to support society, improve the economy, and a more assertive Cyprus-problem policy,” he said.
“The only way to achieve all these goals is for the five centre parties to cooperate.”
Perdikis said his party’s proposal from last August for the five ‘centre’ parties to run a single candidate is the only one that can be credible and present the electorate with hope in the next election.
“We stand by this vision, the pursuit of the cooperation of all five parties,” Perdikis said.
“So, we had a detailed discussion with Diko’s leadership, whom we thank for their visit, on this basis – how the five parties can best cooperate and present a winning proposal. We are committed to this goal all the way to victory, which will be a victory for the people of Cyprus, for our country.”
In addition to Diko and the Greens, the much-touted ‘centre’ front comprises socialist Edek, the Solidarity movement, and the Citizens’ Alliance.
Although Edek and Solidarity are keen to see the five parties rally behind a single candidate and appear willing to defer to Papadopoulos’ presidential ambitions, resistance has come from the Alliance’s Giorgos Lillikas.
Lillikas had run in the last election, backed only by Edek, in which he failed to progress to the runoff election, despite garnering a surprising 25 per cent.
He cites this tally as proof of his better chance at heading the coalition into the election, but has not yet had much luck in convincing Papadopoulos.