After frustrated Greek voters largely ousted the country's two major parties in elections over the weekend, the far-left and far-right politicians suddenly in office had to come up with a coalition government, and on Friday they decided they couldn't.
The sticking point: That bailout the European Union so reluctantly approved in February. The leader of the Radical Left Coalition (SYRIZA), the party that came in second to the New Democrats, said the terms of the bailout were too harsh, and his party wouldn't sign on with any government that planned to continue implementing them, The Associated Press reports. So for now, Socialist leader Evangelos Venizelos says he will hand the governing mandate over to President Karolos Papoulias, who had given it to him on Monday. The position of president is usually a ceremonial one in Greece. The parties will keep trying to work out an agreement for a governing coalition, but for now, Papoulias is in charge. "Unless an agreement is found, Greece will hold new elections next month," the AP reports.
*Correction: An earlier version of this post stated that the Socialists had come in first in the election. In fact, it was the New Democrats.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.