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Greek parliament backs third bailout deal

Greek parliament backs third bailout deal

Athens: A 17-hour marathon debate in the Greek parliament concluded with a vote on Friday, where a third bailout agreement reached with the country's international creditors was approved, the media reported.

In total 222 MPs supported the agreement, 64 voted against it and 11 abstained from the vote, state-run To Vima daily reported.

But there were 31 "No" votes from the ruling Syriza party members, and 11 abstentions -- the biggest rebellion within Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras' government so far.

The proposed deal involves tax raises and spending cuts in return for a bailout of about 85 billion euros ($95 billion).

Tsipras defended his government's policy in the negotiations with Greece's international creditors and argued that the third bailout agreement "was a necessary choice".

“The real dilemma posed in the 17 hours of negotiations was not a bailout or disorderly bankruptcy, but a bailout with the euro or a bailout with the drachma.”

"I have my conscience clear that it is the best we could achieve under the current balance of power in Europe, under conditions of economic and financial asphyxiation imposed upon us," the prime minister added.

The terms of the bailout will be discussed by eurozone finance ministers later in the day, BBC reported.

According to sources, Tsipras is scheduled to seek a confidence vote in parliament next week.

Greece faces an urgent deadline on August 20, when it must repay about 3.2 billion (about $3.5 billion) to the European Central Bank (ECB).

If it had failed to agree on new terms for a bailout, the ECB was likely to stop providing emergency funds to Greek banks.

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