Greek and European Union leaders are sounding alarm bells over the presidential elections to be held in Parliament on 17 December, whose failure to secure a majority would trigger the fall of the country’s coalition government and shake up its EU-brokered bailout deal.

Ekathimerini writes that Prime Minister Antonis Samaras, whose “coalition cannot yet count on the support of the 180 lawmakers it needs” to secure the presidency, has warned independent and opposition MPs that their votes could be a boon for the left-wing Syriza party, which he accuses “of scaring investors and threatening Greece’s position within the eurozone”.

The Economist observes that Syriza — which wants to cancel Greece’s debt and end austerity policies — would win more seats than any other party in the event of a general election, but adds it is not clear how its economic policies would be financed or “made compatible with Greece’s euro membership”.

In Brussels, EUobserver notes European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has weighed in on the election, saying he would prefer “known faces” to “extreme forces” and for the country “to be ruled by people who have an eye and a heart for the many little people in Greece and who also understand the necessity of European processes”.