Greek PM Urges No Vote in Bailout Referendum


Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has urged the Greek people to reject the demands of the country’s creditors ahead of a snap referendum on Sunday concerning the financial crisis it is facing.  Mr Tsipras said that a clear vote against the austerity measures would assist Greece in getting a better settlement from its creditors.

The PM added that without it, he would not be staying in office to oversee more cuts.


Greece’s financial bailout expires on Tuesday and this is also the date it is due to repay a €1.6bn loan to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).  The loan is due to be paid at 18:00 Washington time.

EU leaders have warned that if the Greeks choose to reject the creditors’ proposals, then it would face leading the Eurozone, which Mr Tsipras said he does not want to happen.  But talks broke down last week between the two parties, which saw the Greek banks shutting down and the stock markets fall sharply.

Asian markets rebounded on Tuesday with markets across Tokyo, Hong Kong and Seoul all rising compared with the previous day.

Tens of thousands of people gathered outside the Greek parliament buildings on Monday to show support for their government’s approach while a rival protest in favour of a yes vote is being organised for Tuesday.


Mr Tsipras spoke on live state TV on Monday evening, asking Greece to reject the creditors proposals, saying this would hand him a more powerful weapon to take to the negotiating table.  He asked the people to ‘reject it with all the might of your soul with the greatest margin possible’.

He also told the viewers that he did not believe the creditors wanted Greece to leave the Eurozone because it would cost too much.  He also hinted that he would resign if there was a yes vote at the referendum.

He said that if the Greek people wanted to proceed with the austerity plans in perpetuity, leaving the country ‘unable to lift its head’ then his party would respect this but would not be the ones to carry it out.

Some of the Eurozone leaders, including Italy’s Prime Minister and the French President, voiced their concerns about the fact that the Greek voters were effectively deciding whether to stay in the Euro or not.


From the other side, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said he felt betrayed by the Greek government and called on the people to oppose him.  He said that he still thought a Greek exit from the Eurozone was not an option and insisted the country’s creditors meant more social fairness.

The government has already forced all banks to be closed until after the referendum on 6th July after the European Central Bank (ECB) elected not to extend the emergency funding.  It is thought to have disbursed virtually all of its ceiling for funds, amounting to over €89 bn.

This saw long queues of people at ATMs trying to withdraw funds, which were capped at just €60 per day while those without bank cards were forced to wait outside closed branches in hope of getting cash that way.


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