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No support for either candidate from centre coalition (Updated)

Edek leader Marinos Sizopoulos meeting with President Anastasiades on Wednesday

The leaders of the so-called centre parties including Diko decided on Wednesday not to pledge support to either of the two candidates – incumbent Nicos Anastasiades and Akel-backed Stavros Malas – in Sunday’s runoff vote for the presidency.

The objective is for the parties to follow the same direction on Sunday and that is to support “neither of them”, said Edek deputy head Maria Vasiliadou.

The final decision will be made by the party members, she said. Edek had said that both the candidates’ positions on the Cyprus problem differed from Edek’s.

The decision was made during a meeting at the Nicolas Papadopoulos campaign headquarters and the parties – Edek, Solidarity, Diko, Greens – will now ask their members to endorse it.

“We think that the time has come to create a uniform front based on political convergences,” Edek deputy head Maria Vasiliadou said afterwards.

She added that the aim was to bolster the third political pole in the long run but it was too early to speak about the formation of a new party.

“We have tried many times to create this third pole and a lot of mistakes have been made, which we paid for. That is why this time … we want to create solid ground so that it would really work as a third pole,” Vasiliadou said.

Solidarity’s Eleni Theocharous said the parties that supported Papadopoulos in his failed bid for the presidency would maintain a common line in the runoff.

“The decision is that we neither support Nicos Anastasiades nor Stavros Malas, neither of the two candidates,” she said.

Asked if they were telling their supporters to abstain or drop a blank ballot, Theocharous said it was not a dictatorship.

“We are saying that this is the position of the party leaderships … from then on people are free to do as they please.”

Theocharous said co-operation between the parties will extend to parliamentary level.

Green Party chairman Giorgos Perdikis said it was important that no horse-trading had taken place with the winners.

“And this is very positive because the conditions are created to build unity for future co-operation,” he said.

Edek leader Marinos Sizopoulos, meanwhile, met Anastasiades with the two men agreeing to disagree.

“We concluded that we disagree, that there is no room at the moment for any changes in the president’s positions especially on the Cyprus problem,” Sizopoulos said.

The same was confirmed during Edek’s meeting on Tuesday with Malas.

The leader of the Citizens’ Alliance, Giorgos Lillikas, also said they disagreed with the president on the Cyprus problem.

But he said all possibilities were open regarding the party’s stance in the runoff, he added following a meeting with Anastasiades.

“Everything we heard and discussed will be conveyed to the afternoon session of the supreme senate, which will take the decision regarding the party’s stance in the second round,” Lillikas said.

Diko announced later in the day that the party’s central committee unanimously agreed that it could not support any of the two candidates at the runoff.

The party said it could not overlook the “choice of the 100,000 citizens who supported the positions and proposals of Nicolas Papadopoulos”. Consistency in these positions, Diko said, is a matter of political credibility and belief in their correctness.

The positions of the two candidates, Diko said, mainly on the Cyprus problem are far different from its own.

“Therefore, any cooperation requires retreat from these positions which would be disrespectful to those who supported us,” the party said.

Earlier on Wednesday, the presidency announced that Anastasiades had responded to a questionnaire sent to him by far-right Elam by attaching his policy statement.

Anastasiades’ response letter was made public by the government “for transparency reasons”.

Elam’s questionnaire included 20 questions regarding the Cyprus problem, energy, economy, and various social issues. Elam won 5.65 per cent of the vote in Sunday’s first round.

“Regarding your questionnaire, I enclose my policy statement in which my positions on the national issue, the economy, modernisation of the state, stamping out corruption, and all the issues people have to deal with in their daily life are clearly recorded,” Anastasiades said.

It was sent to both presidential contenders, Anastasiades and Stavros Malas. Elam said it would take a stance on the runoff after studying the responses.

Malas said from the onset that he was not going to respond to the party and the envelope containing the document was returned unopened.

In his response, Anastasiades said he disagreed with the party, though he had respect for all citizens of the country.

 

 

 

 

The leaders of the so-called centre parties decided on Wednesday not to pledge support to either of the two candidates – incumbent Nicos Anastasiades and Akel-backed Stavros Malas – in Sunday’s runoff vote for the presidency.

The objective is for the parties to follow the same direction on Sunday and that is to support “neither of them”, said Edek deputy head Maria Vasiliadou.

The final decision will be made by the party members, she said. Edek had said that both the candidates’ positions on the Cyprus problem differed from Edek’s.

The decision was made during a meeting at the Nicolas Papadopoulos campaign headquarters and the parties – Edek, Solidarity, Diko, Greens – will now ask their members to endorse it.

“We think that the time has come to create a uniform front based on political convergences,” Edek deputy head Maria Vasiliadou said afterwards.

She added that the aim was to bolster the third political pole in the long run but it was too early to speak about the formation of a new party.

“We have tried many times to create this third pole and a lot of mistakes have been made, which we paid for. That is why this time … we want to create solid ground so that it would really work as a third pole,” Vasiliadou said.

Solidarity’s Eleni Theocharous said the parties that supported Papadopoulos in his failed bid for the presidency would maintain a common line in the runoff.

“The decision is that we neither support Nicos Anastasiades nor Stavros Malas, neither of the two candidates,” she said.

Asked if they were telling their supporters to abstain or drop a blank ballot, Theocharous said it was not a dictatorship.

“We are saying that this is the position of the party leaderships … from then on people are free to do as they please.”

Theocharous said co-operation between the parties will extend to parliamentary level.

Green Party chairman Giorgos Perdikis said it was important that no horse-trading had taken place with the winners.

“And this is very positive because the conditions are created to build unity for future co-operation,” he said.

Edek leader Marinos Sizopoulos, meanwhile, met Anastasiades with the two men agreeing to disagree.

“We concluded that we disagree, that there is no room at the moment for any changes in the president’s positions especially on the Cyprus problem,” Sizopoulos said.

The same was confirmed during Edek’s meeting on Tuesday with Malas.

The leader of the Citizens’ Alliance, Giorgos Lillikas, also said they disagreed with the president on the Cyprus problem.

But he said all possibilities were open regarding the party’s stance in the runoff, he added following a meeting with Anastasiades.

“Everything we heard and discussed will be conveyed to the afternoon session of the supreme senate, which will take the decision regarding the party’s stance in the second round,” Lillikas said.

Earlier on Wednesday, the presidency announced that Anastasiades had responded to a questionnaire sent to him by far-right Elam by attaching his policy statement.

Anastasiades’ response letter was made public by the government “for transparency reasons”.

Elam’s questionnaire included 20 questions regarding the Cyprus problem, energy, economy, and various social issues. Elam won 5.65 per cent of the vote in Sunday’s first round.

“Regarding your questionnaire, I enclose my policy statement in which my positions on the national issue, the economy, modernisation of the state, stamping out corruption, and all the issues people have to deal with in their daily life are clearly recorded,” Anastasiades said.

It was sent to both presidential contenders, Anastasiades and Stavros Malas. Elam said it would take a stance on the runoff after studying the responses.

Malas said from the onset that he was not going to respond to the party and the envelope containing the document was returned unopened.

In his response, Anastasiades said he disagreed with the party, though he had respect for all citizens of the country.

On the Cyprus problem, the president repeated that he knew well the boundaries inside which the survival of Cypriot Hellenism was ensured. He said he would continue to work closely with Greece in dealing with the national matter.

 

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