Cypriot official: vote on savings grab to go ahead

Associated Press
A woman passes outside of the a Russian commercial bank in capital Nicosia, Cyprus, Tuesday, March 19, 2013.  A high proportion of deposits in Cypriot banks are believed to be held by Russians and Cypriot Finance Minister Michalis Sarris is flying to Moscow Tuesday to meet with his Russian counterpart.  Financial markets are reported to be tense Tuesday as investors await a vote in Cyprus on a contentious plan to help fund the country's bailout by a one off charge on bank deposits although there may be a change to the proposed levy to spare small account holders. (AP Photo/Petros Karadjias)
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NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) — The Cypriot speaker of the house says a parliamentary vote on a plan to seize part of bank deposits will go ahead as scheduled today, despite a request by the governing party for a delay.

Yiannakis Omirou said the vote would be held Tuesday evening. DISY lawmaker Averof Neophytou had argued that postponing the vote to Wednesday would give legislators a chance to seek a solution that would prevent "the big dangers our country is facing."

The government presented a plan over the weekend to dip directly into people's Cypriot bank accounts in order to contribute €5.8 billion ($7.5 billion) out of a €15.8 billion bailout. The move has caused an uproar.

The government brought an amended bill Tuesday that will shield small savers with up to €20,000 ($25,858) in the bank from the seizure. But the government proposal still faces stiff resistance and may not pass the vote.

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