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Controversy over Macedonia: Tsipras survives a vote of confidence

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Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras can continue to govern. Parliament in Athens voiced his confidence last night. As the parliamentary committee announced, 151 MPs voted for Tsipras. 148 voted against, there was one abstention.

The governing party SYRIZA itself has 145 parliamentary seats – another six votes were now in the vote of independent parliamentarians and deputies of smaller parties. Tsipras had asked the question of confidence in view of the intra-Greek dispute over a negotiated name compromise with Macedonia.

Walk free for Macedonia deal

This clears the way for the signing of the Macedonia Agreement, which ends the decades-long name dispute. Accordingly, the neighboring country should be called in the future North Macedonia – because a northern Greek province also bears the name Macedonia. In this context, Greece has promised not to further block Macedonia’s rapprochement with the EU and NATO.

However, this compromise is not enough for Greek conservatives and nationalists. Defense Minister Panos Kammenos and his Independent Greeks Party (ANEL) had canceled the coalition with SYRIZA on Sunday.