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Greek govt sets July 7 as date for early election

Greek govt sets July 7 as date for early election

The Greek government has set July 7, a week later than expected, as the date for early parliamentary elections.

The decision was taken so as not to disrupt students’ university entry exams, which would have been affected by a June 30 date, the earliest date allowed under Greece’s electoral system, government spokesman Dimitris Tzannakopoulos said on Tuesday.

Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras called the early election after his party’s heavy defeat in the weekend’s European parliamentary polls. Tsipras said after the EU-wide vote on Sunday that he would seek the dissolution of Greece's parliament after the country's second round of regional and municipal elections on June 2, AP reports.

Tsipras’ current four-year term expires in October. His left-wing Syriza party trailed the opposition conservative New Democracy by 9.4 percentage points in the May 26 vote.