Greek government survives no-confidence vote

Rally outside Greek parliament in Athens, 10 November 2013
Image caption Opponents of the government rallied outside parliament before the vote

The conservative-led coalition government of Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras has survived a vote of no-confidence in parliament.

The vote had been tabled by the left-wing opposition party, Syriza.

The motion was defeated by 153 votes to 124 in the 300-seat parliament.

Syriza is strongly opposed to the government's austerity measures which have been imposed to meet the terms of an international bailout.

One Socialist member of the governing coalition voted in favour of the motion, and was expelled as a result.

Outside parliament, several thousand Syriza supporters rallied to demonstrate their support for the no-confidence call.

"Thousands of people are looking in the rubbish for food," Syriza leader Alexis Tsipras said, as the motion was debated in parliament.

Greece has been granted two bailouts totalling about 240bn euros (£202bn; $323bn) to help cover holes in its financing, and there is speculation it will need a third package of at least 11bn euros next year.

A delegation from the troika of the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund is currently in Athens to assess the situation before disbursing up to 5.9bn euros in loans.

"You chose the wrong moment to play parliamentary theatrics, in a time when the government is in crucial negotiations with the troika," Mr Samaras told the Syriza leader in parliament.

The troika says there is a budget gap of more than 2bn euros for next year that may require more austerity but the government argues the country cannot take any more.

Greece has predicted that it will emerge from its six-year long recession next year, in a sign it may be finally recovering from its debt crisis.