Greece’s Venizelos says election could decide euro membership-report

by on May 1, 2012 1:06 am BST

Mon Apr 30, 2012 9:06pm EDT

May 1 (Reuters) – Greece’s Evangelos Venizelos, who
will lead the ruling Socialists into the May 6 election, said in
a newspaper interview on Tuesday that euro membership is not a
certainty regardless of the outcome.

“There are certain misconceptions that worry me: for
instance, the misconception that whatever happens we are not
going to leave the euro,” Venizelos is quoted as saying in the

Venizelos, 55, quit as finance minister to lead the PASOK
party after spearheading the marathon debt talks that were
concluded with the world’s biggest debt restructuring in March.

“Europe and the euro zone have no reason, rationally, to
push Greece out of the euro. But this is a system in which many
parties, many countries, many governments, many electorates
participate and we could have events which, rationally, are not
controllable,” he is cited as saying.

He said Sunday’s election is Greece’s “most critical,” with
polls showing a rise in support for anti-bailout parties.

“The Greek people will have to give a clear answer as to
whether it wants (to follow) a pro-European course, which is
safe and responsible, or something else,” he said in the

Venizelos, a constitutional law expert turned politician,
was elected in March to take over PASOK from former Prime
Minister George Papandreou with a mandate to revive the party’s
chances ahead of the polls.