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Ousted ANEL MP claims debt relief, milder austerity promised in exchange for FYROM 'name solution'

Pressure continues to build on the junior partner in the Greek coalition government, the right-wing Independent Greeks' (AN.EL) party, in the wake of a bilateral agreement between Athens and Skopje to resolve the FYROM "name issue" and a subsequent "no confidence" motion that was rejected by a slim majority of Parliament MPs.

One "casualty" from the roll call vote was MP Dimitris Kammenos, who was expelled from AN.EL's Parliamentary group for voting in favor of the "no confidence" motion. He expulsion was essentially decided by the small rightist-leftist party's founder and president, Defense Minister Panos Kammenos.

In taking to the airwaves on Monday, Kammenos - the expelled MP - charged that "objections were overcome they (AN.EL MPs) were informed of economic trades, such as for the debt and pensions (in Greece)."

According to unconfirmed reports, Dimitris Kammenos was referring to a briefing of his now former party comrades by Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos, before a vote on an omnibus draft bill last week.

Moreover, the now expelled AN.EL deputy - who was even elected as a Parliament vice-president - said another party MP referred to an "agreement with Skopje that is a good agreement, and the country's course shouldn't be endangered, because we'll receive positive adjustment for the debt; pensions won't be (further) cut and the ENFIA (property tax) will be cut by 30 percent."

 In a first reaction to Dimitris Kammenos' statements, Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias said "we gave nothing in exchange for something else; we achieved the best agreement for the country ... the biggest danger and risk is being taken by Skopje (the Zaev government) because they are trusting us."