Greece “has done what it had to do”, now it’s up to Europe
Sunday, 24 May 2015
The Greek government will not meet “irrational” demands, but has done its part to find a compromise concerning its debt. A compromise is possible “if Europe does its part too”, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said. “We have done what we had to do, now it is Europe’s turn”, Mr Tsipras said to his party’s central committee. He said the country “was at the end of a very painful and difficult period”. “The majority of Greeks want a viable solution, and not just an agreement”, he said. Alexis Tsipras accused “some of the creditor’s representatives” of taking advantage of the lack of cash flow in Greece to overturn the 20th of February agreement. The Greek government “will not respond to irrational demands” and will “insist on the lines not to be crossed”, the Prime Minister has promised. “We will not consider a major overhaul of the salary system or another reduction in pensions”, he added, trying to appease some members of his party that want the government to respect its electoral promises to the letter.
Alexis Tsipar’s radical left-wing government is negotiating to try and obtain financial aid being blocked by international creditors – the European Union, the Central European Bank and the International Monetary Fund – who have floated Greece twice, to the sum of 240 billion euros. An agreement is urgently needed as Greece has almost no money left: it has been surviving since August 2014, waiting for creditors to transfer a loan of 7.2 billion euros. After meeting with the Greek Prime Minister in Riga on Friday, François Hollande and Angela Merkel said that Greece needs to continue working with creditors. Mrs Merkel said there “was still a lot to do” and “they need to work very, very intensively”.