Greece’s government announced that crucial presidential elections due in two months time would instead happen next week.
The surprise decision comes after Eurozone financial chiefs said they supported an extension of Greece’s bailout of two months.
Greek government spokesman said last night the vote would be held 17 December with possible later rounds held through 23 and 29 December.
Greek law states that if no candidates can get 200 votes in the first vote a second must be held five days later. If still no one earns 200 votes a third vote is conducted which requires a candidate to get 180 votes; if that fail, there follows snap elections.
The presidential elections could trigger early elections if Prime Minister Antonis Samaras loses his bid to get his presidential candidate elected.
The leftist party SYRIZA currently leads the Samaras’ conservative NEW DEMOCRACY party in opinion polls.