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Greek parliament fails for second time to elect a president

Lawmakers vote at the Greek Parliament in Athens during the first round of a three-stage presidential election in Greece on December 17, 2014Greece moved closer on Tuesday to early elections that could undermine its international bailout and rekindle a eurozone crisis after lawmakers failed for a second time to elect a president. The government candidate, EU Environment Commissioner Stavros Dimas, fell 32 votes short of the required 200 votes, meaning a third and final vote will be held on December 29. Prime Minister Antonis Samaras warned after the vote that early general elections, which could be held as soon as January 25, constituted a “national danger” that must be avoided. Financial analysts said given Tuesday’s showing, the government would be ultimately unable to turn the contest to its advantage.

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