Main opposition SYRIZA leader Stefanos Kasselakis on Thursday gave his first major interview after last Sunday’s European Parliament election, where he referred to the results during an appearance on the prime-time newscast of Mega Channel.

“When you reduce the gap to a mere breathing distance in western Athens, Piraeus and Achaia (prefecture), it means something has changed. I am very proud that SYRIZA has stood before these conditions … the people (who supported us) have a commitment that we’ll continue to do everything for their benefit,” Kasselakis said, in essentially “cherry-picking” a handful of election districts where his leftist party fared the best.

Ruling New Democracy (ND) picked up 28.31% of the vote on Sunday compared to SYRIZA’s 14.92%, with both parties falling from their percentages in the previous European Parliament election in May 2019.

Kasselakis pointed to what he called conservative ND’s collapse in the ballot, saying the ruling party fell from 41% in the June 2023 general election to its 28% showing last Sunday.

ND had gained 33% five years ago when it was then in the main opposition.

Conversely, Kasselakis said that despite two internal party splits within SYRIZA and the loss of support in two border prefectures due to the emergence of a minority party, his leftist party retained its strength.

He pointed to SYRIZA first place showing in the 17 to 35 age group by a few percentage points over ND and among those who previously declared themselves “undecided”.

Asked about criticism that his and his party’s spending pledges are unrealistic and unsound, he replied:

“They shot back about ‘money trees’… I have challenged them to go together to the General Accounting office,” he said, in defending his spending proposals.


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