Greek Crisis: Papandreou Calls The Eurozone Bailout A 'National Priority'
George Papandreou has called the securing of the eurozone bailout a “national priority” for Greece.
Speaking to the parliament before the crunch no-confidence vote, the beleaguered PM struck a defiant tone, blaming the previous government for running up the country’s huge debt.
He asked for a vote of confidence "so our country has a government to take necessary steps of security over the next few months".
He said he would look to set up a coalition government, calling for greater collaboration and cooperation between the political parties.
The role of the coalition or "government of national unity" would be to pass the bailout package pending fresh elections.
“The bailout allows us to write-off a large part of our debt in the next few months and permits us to give the energy to build a Greece of growth,” he said.
He also assured the Greek citizens that there money is safe.
“Greek people, there is no problem with your deposits in the banks because of the bailout. They are even more guaranteed with us in the eurozone.
“This bailout is tremendous opportunity to rebuild country on new foundations.”
“We are living through a new trial, and some of us wish to forget what has happened in the past."
He reiterated that in the interest of Greece and the rest of Europe it was time to pass the bailout package.
The Greek PM did not say he was going to resign.
Earlier, Papandreou faced calls for his resignation from opposition parties, as well as from some within his own ruling socialist party.