Tsipras on Eurogroup result: 'Decisive step' for exiting crisis; ND leader demands answers in Parliament debate

Friday, 16 June 2017 11:50

The Greek premier was referring to the scheduled end of the third memorandum in August 2018.

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras referred to a "decisive step" in exiting the ongoing economic crisis that has bedeviled the country since late 2009, speaking during a meeting with the Greek president less than 24 hours after a crucial Eurogroup meeting signed off on another bailout tranche for the country.

Tsipras, a firebrand leftist political leader who assumed power in 2015 on a virulently anti-austerity and anti-memorandum campaign plank, also added that "a clear message of confidence was sent to the markets ... a clear message for a permanent end of the third (bailout) program in a year from today".

The Greek premier was referring to the scheduled end of the third memorandum in August 2018.

"I'm here to back the effort by the government and the rest of the democratic parties to the very end," Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos said on Friday morning, agreeing with Tsipras that the June 15 Eurogroup result was the "beginning of the end for the Greek crisis".

In a diametrically opposing view, main opposition New Democracy (ND) leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis called for an off-the-agenda debate in Parliament on the state of the Greek economy, in general, and specifically on decisions taken on Thursday at the Eurogroup venue and what commitments the Tsipras government made to creditors, as he phrased it.

"The second review of the (Greek bailout) program concluded after 16 months of delays, something that entailed immense costs for Greek citizens and the economy," Mitsotakis said, while again charging that the current leftist-rightist government coalition led the country to many more years of austerity.