Portugal braces for govt collapse amid debt crisis

Posted: March 22, 2011 in World News

Associated Press
March 22, 2011

LISBON, Portugal (AP) — The leader of Portugal’s main opposition party says the minority government’s downfall is “inevitable” after it failed to win political support for its latest plan to cut the country’s huge debt burden.

Portugal is trying to avoid becoming the latest of the 17 eurozone countries to need a bailout, following financial aid for Greece and Ireland last year.

But all opposition parties have balked at the Socialist government’s new austerity measures, which are expected to be rejected by Parliament even though European leaders praised them.

Pedro Passos Coelho, leader of the main opposition Social Democratic Party, said late Monday that the political deadlock made an early election unavoidable.

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