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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 16-04-15

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] PM Tsipras: Greece's program review will be completed without additional measures
  • [02] Present government turning Greece into 'banana republic', ND leader says

  • [01] PM Tsipras: Greece's program review will be completed without additional measures

    The Greek program review will be completed without additional austerity measures because that's what the agreement stipulates and everyone must respect it, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said on Friday during a heated debate in parliament on a proposal tabled by SYRIZA and ANEL to start a probe into the legality and conditions under which banks gave loans to parties and various media.

    "The country is not alone. And the country is right and we will be vindicated. The economy will return to growth and the people will exit from the tunnel after six years of disaster," Tsipras told MPs.

    "While society was in the midst of austerity, with thousands of jobs being lost, and the unprecedented burden on the taxpayers, who had the nerve to refund the loans of political parties and media? Which expediency was served?" he wondered, adding that the triangle of corruption – banks, parties, media – planned and implemented policies that favoured economic elites.

    Tsipras then focused his criticism on the main opposition, accusing it of siding with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and its austerity policies. "You're more Catholic than the Pope," he said turning to ND leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis. "What do you mean you fully identify with the positions of the IMF on the issues of labour market and structural reforms?"

    He also accused Mitsotakis of discrediting the country by calling for elections juts before the program review is completed, alleging that the government coalition is about to collapse. He said this showed the ND leader is willing to lead the country to a credit crunch just to gain power. "This is your aim, once again, but it's not going to happen. You have to understand that you'll have to wait for a long time," he said, adding the people will not give an opportunity to these neoliberal positions.

    Mentioning the Wikileaks affair, when telephone conversations between the IMF's top officials were leaked, Tsipras said that New Democracy, instead on focusing on the content of these leaks, made innuendos about the source of the leak. He then accused Mitsotakis of defending the positions of "third parties" and not Greece's, by referring to the ND leader's comment that the country is in shambles.

    "There's a climate of recognition for Greece. In the name of this recognition, the Pope and the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew are coming to Greece," he said.

    [02] Present government turning Greece into 'banana republic', ND leader says

    Main opposition New Democracy leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis on Friday repeated a call for elections, saying the interests of the country would be best served by the removal of the present government.

    "With every day that passes, Greece is reminiscent of a banana republic because that is the state to which you have rendered the country," Mitsotakis said, replying to criticism that Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras levelled against him in Parliament.

    "I defence the country's interests and the country's interests are not the same as yours. The interests of the country demand that you leave sooner rather than later," Mitsotakis added, noting that Tsipras would go down in history as "the prime of closed borders and closed banks."

    Mitsotakis said that he would vote in favour of a Parliamentary probe proposed by ruling coalition leader SYRIZA, whereas SYRIZA will not support ND's proposal for a Parliamentary committee to investigate its first six months in power and attribute responsibility for the imposition of a bank holiday, capital controls and whether there was a plan to leave the euro.

    "You don't want this committee because you tremble at the revelations, because you are repeating the catastrophe of 2015 and fail to learn from your mistakes," he said.

    ND's leader also slammed the government's handling of the negotiations with the creditors on the review of the programme, saying it was tantamount to Chinese water torture for society.

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