April 30 - The Cypriot parliament narrowly passed a measure approving the European Union's controversial bailout which will tax uninsured deposits. Conway G. Gittens reports.
A controversial plan to bailout Cyprus will live to see the light of the day - but it sure wasn't easy. Lawmakers barely approved the controversial $13.2 billion European Union bailout package, which forces the wind down of the country's second largest bank - and in turn the government could levy a heavy tax on uninsured deposits at a second bank. The passage, by the thinnest of margins, was met by mixed reaction. Here is Averof Neophytou of the ruling Democratic Rally Party, Andros Kyprianou of the Communist Party and Nicholas Papadopoulos of the Democratic Party. SOUNDBITE: GOVERNING 'DEMOCRATIC RALLY' PARTY LEADER AVEROF NEOPHYTOU SAYING (ENGLISH) SAYING: "We realise and we understand that the provisions are very tough but there is no alternative. We will work hard to regain the credibility of our country and the credibility of our banking sector." SOUNDBITE: COMMUNIST PARTY 'AKEL' PARTY LEADER ANDROS KYPRIANOU (ENGLISH) SAYING: "Having examined the whole situation in the rest of the countries where MOUs were implemented, out evaluation is that the situation in Cyprus, it will be even worse." SOUNDBITE: DEMOCRATIC PARTY 'DIKO' DEPUTY PARTY LEADER NICHOLAS PAPADOPOULOS (ENGLISH) SAYING: "I believe it was the correct decision. There was no other choice. The choice was not between joining a support mechanism, the choice was between gaining financial assistance and bankruptcy." Some lawmakers may be pleased, buy their constituents are not. About 300 demonstrators gathered outside the parliament building, with a few choice words for those inside - calling vote takers "thieves."