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Greek anti-bailout party extends lead in polls, vows to topple government

  • Greece European Elections-1.jpg

    A small bond-holder holds a banner with a picture of the leader of Greece's Socialist party, Evangelos Venizelos wearing a mask during a speech by Greek left-wing opposition leader Alexis Tsipras, in the northern Greek city of Thessaloniki on Wednesday, May 21, 2014. Around 400 million Europeans voters in 28 countries on Thursday begin choosing the next European Parliament and helping determine the EU's future leaders and course. Greece's rickety coalition government faces its second electoral test in local, regional and European parliamentary elections on Sunday which the left-wing opposition has billed as a referendum on the country's bailout. (AP Photo/Nikolas Giakoumidis) (The Associated Press)

  • Greece Financial Crisis-2.jpg

    Laid-off Greek Finance Ministry cleaning staff shout slogans as they block the entrance of a Finance Ministry building in central Athens, on Thursday, May 22, 2014. Dozens took part in the protest, demanding that the government respects a recent court decision to reinstate them in their jobs. The May 12 ruling found that 397 cleaners who made the complaint were wrongfully suspended from their jobs eight months ago, as part of a state sector staff reduction program. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris) (The Associated Press)

An anti-bailout party in Greece is leading in opinion polls before this weekend's local government and European elections, and is vowing to scrap international agreements that rescued the country's economy from bankruptcy at the cost of harsh austerity.

Three opinion polls published Thursday found that support for the left-wing Syriza party was running 2.5 percent to 3.2 percent ahead of the conservative New Democracy party, which leads Greece's coalition government.

Syriza leader Alexis Tsipras declared at his party's main election rally in Athens that a Syriza victory in Sunday's twin polls would force the government to call early parliamentary elections.

The 39-year-old Tsipras is also running as a left-wing candidate for the continent's top political job, European Commission president.