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Greece's new prime minister reckons Sinn Féin will win the election next year

Alexis Tsipras’s victory speech last night included a reference to Ireland.

ALEXIS TSIPRAS, WHOSE radical left-wing party Syriza scored a stunning victory yesterday, has predicted that Sinn Féin will win the general election in Ireland next year.

In his victory speech last night, the man set to become Greece’s next prime minister as soon as today predicted that Syriza’s victory would pave the way for other left-wing parties to benefit across Europe.

“On 25 January, we started a new era and the victory of Syriza will be followed by the Spanish people electing Podemos and United Left and next year, in Ireland, with Sinn Féin,” he told a jubilant crowd of supporters in Athens last night.

Tsipras said that “a wind of democratic change is blowing across Europe” and added that “the change in Greece is called Syriza. In Spain, it’s called Podemos. Hope is coming.”

Syriza fell just short of an overall majority in yesterday’s election, winning 149 of the 300 seats in the Greek parliament.

It will form a coalition government with the right-wing Independent Greeks and plans to  renegotiate Greece’s massive bailout agreements in a bid to get some form of debt relief.

Tsipras visited Ireland last year during the local and European elections campaign and spent some time campaigning with Sinn Féin.

Yesterday he even retweeted good luck wishes from Sinn Féin deputy leader Mary Lou McDonald:

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Sinn Féin quickly latched onto Tsipras’s comments last night with party strategist and councillor Eoin Ó Broin getting plenty of retweets:

Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams, who spoke to Tsipras on the phone last Friday, said that Syriza’s victory “opens up the real prospect of democratic change not just for the people of Greece, but for citizens right across the EU”.

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Hugh O'Connell

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