Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos (R) meets with Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras in Athens, Greece, on June 10, 2019. Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on Monday requested Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos for the dissolution of the parliament and called for general elections. (Xinhua/Marios Lolos)
ATHENS, June 10 (Xinhua) -- Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on Monday requested Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos for the dissolution of the parliament and called for general elections.
The outgoing prime minister had announced his intention to do so following the results of the European parliament elections and local elections on May 26. In both electoral battles, his Radical Left SYRIZA party suffered defeat by a large margin to the main opposition conservative party.
The government's term would end in October, but the outcome of the recent elections triggered calls for snap national elections.
Since the European elections, there is a sense that Greece is in a prolonged campaign period of nearly four months and this could pose possible dangers for the Greek economy, Tsipras justified his decision during the visit to the presidential mansion which was broadcast on Greek national broadcaster ERT.
"Given that we have entered a normalcy cycle, this must under no circumstances be interrupted, as it would signal that the sacrifices and efforts of the Greek people are being threatened," he said.
"Given these facts, and with a full sense of this responsibility, I am asking you for the dissolution of parliament and the calling of general elections, as foreseen by the constitution, and the electoral law, for the renewal of the public mandate," Tsipras concluded.
The President accepted the request, citing the relevant article of the Greek constitution.
The parliament was expected to dissolve this week and Greeks will head to the polls on July 7.
According to all recent opinion surveys the conservatives of New Democracy party are leading the race.