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By Renee Maltezou and Costas Pitas ATHENS (Reuters) - Greek leftwing leader Alexis Tsipras struck a deal with a right-wing party to form a government to confront international lenders and reverse years of painful austerity following a crushing election victory by his Syriza party. The success of the anti-bailout party reignites fears of a new financial troubles in the country that set off the regional crisis in 2009. Fresh from trouncing conservative Prime Minister Antonis Samaras on a campaign of "Hope is coming!", the 40-year-old Tsipras quickly sealed a deal on a coalition with the head of the small Independent Greeks party which, like Syriza, opposes Greece's bailout deal. The Independent Greeks give a vote of confidence in Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras.
President Bashar al-Assad has said U.S.-led air strikes against Islamic State militants in Syria should be subject to an agreement with Damascus and Syrian troops should be involved on the ground. Assad was speaking in an interview with the U.S.-based Foreign Affairs Magazine published on Monday. "With any country that is serious about fighting terrorism, we are ready to make cooperation, if they're serious," Assad said, when asked if he would be willing to take steps to make cooperation easier with Washington. Washington supports opposition forces fighting for the past four years to topple Assad, but its position has become complicated since Islamic State and other hardline groups emerged as the most powerful rebel factions.