World Bulletin / News Desk
Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras has expelled one of his deputies for threatening to vote against the latest package of austerity measures demanded by international lenders, the government said on Monday.
Greece is finalising a package of spending cuts worth 11.5 billion euros for 2013 and 2014, which must be ratified by parliament before it can secure its next tranche of aid from the EU and IMF to avoid bankruptcy.
Nikos Stavrogiannis was dismissed from the New Democracy parliamentary group after saying he would vote against the measures, which include a new wave of cuts to wages and pensions, because they were "unfair, harsh and ineffective".
"My conscience does not allow me to vote for measures that devastate the weakest members of society," Stavrogiannis told the Real News newspaper in an interview published on Saturday.
The expulsion of Stavrogiannis, who remains in parliament as as an independent, underscores Samaras's hard line on deputies publicly undermining his pledge to push through the cuts to restore Greece's credibility among lenders.
"Obviously we do not see eye to eye with Mr Stavrogiannis," the government's spokesman, Simos Kedikoglou, told Greek television on Monday, confirming the expulsion.
"The vast majority of us have realised that there is an imperative national duty that we must serve, that we must put the national interest above everything else."
Stavrogiannis's dismissal reduces the three-party coalition's backing to 177 seats in the 300-member parliament, still comfortably above the 151-seat majority needed for the measures to pass.
Stavrogiannis is the first New Democracy lawmaker to be kicked out for threatening to vote against the package. In July, Samaras expelled Deputy Labour Minister Nikos Nikolopoulos after he resigned his post complaining that the government was not being forceful enough in negotiations with its lenders.
Ties between Cairo and Doha deteriorated after then-army chief Sisi removed President Mohamed Mursi and his Muslim Brotherhood from power in July 2013.
The delivery comes just after Stephen Beecroft, the new U.S. ambassador to Egypt, arrives in Cairo
Many Rohingya have previously refused to register as "Bengalis" because they say the term implies they are illegal immigrants from neighbouring Bangladesh.
The men were flown to Kabul overnight aboard a U.S. military plane and released to Afghan authorities, the first such transfer of its kind to the war-torn country since 2009
Yazidi activist accuses ISIL militants of perpetrating the 70 deaths after Peshmerga find grave near Mosul
The insurgents came in large numbers to raid the town and clashed with security forces in it
Rescue operation is under way for the officers, local security chief in Kunduz province says
A 29 year old woman was verbally and physically attacked with local association saying it is the result of widespread hate caused by political movement Pegida.
Ban Ki Moon orders Israel to pay $850 million to foot the bill for strike on fuel tank that caused fuel spill into the Mediterranean.
Hossein Dehghan says Iran would intervene immediately if the holy sites in Iraq are threatened by ISIL or other armed groups
Nearly 5.3 million Tunisian voters are eligible to cast ballot in Sunday's election, which is billed as the country's first democratic presidential election.
Palestinians who sought refuge in Gaza after years of difficulty in Syria, say that their lives are far more difficult in Gaza, than Syria.
According to the latest World Health Organization figures, 7,373 people have died of Ebola in the three worst-affected countries, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea.
The dead were behind the killing of a member of the security forces last Sunday, a ministry spokesman said
The election was initially scheduled for October 14 before being postponed due to Ebola outbreak
Modi has in recent weeks come under fire for being slow to rein in his hardline affiliate groups that are allegedly trying to promote a Hindu-dominant agenda by luring Muslims and Christians to convert