Sunday 24 September 2017

Greece to meet the Troika this weekend to avoid it running out of money next Monday - Taoiseach

Greece's Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, speaks during a parliament session before the conference vote in Athens. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)
Greece's Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, speaks during a parliament session before the conference vote in Athens. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)

Daniel McConnell, Group Political Correspondent

Intensive talks between Greece and the Troika are to take place over the weekend to avoid it running out of money next Monday, Taoiseach Enda Kenny has said.

Speaking at the conclusion of a meeting of EU leaders in Brussels tonight, Mr Kenny said newly elected Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras agreed to the talks after a face to face meeting with Eurogroup President Jeroen Dijsselbloem.

Mr Tsipras who had campaigned on an anti-Troika platform during his historic election, told his fellow leaders that he wants to honour contracts that have been entered into them.

"The language is of restructuring not of default," a senior EU source said last night.

Greece's willingness to at least engage with the Troika was seen as positive but the task of cobbling a deal together in time for the finance ministers' meeting on Monday is "complicated and complex" Mr Kenny said.

Read More: Debt forgiveness deal for Greece would be 'unfair' to Ireland - Finnish PM

Referring to the hostility among EU leaders to Mr Tsipras' calls for debt forgiveness, Mr Kenny said:   "There is a very strong willingness within the EU council to work with Greece to find a way forward, but there was also a very strong view here that rules have to be adhered to," he said.

The Taoiseach revealed what Mr Tsipras had said to his counterparts during their six hour meeting.

"The prime minister spoke to the EU council in formal session for the first time. He set out his view as to what he wants for his country and his people. He mentioned two things in particular, the principle of democracy and the second thing was the principle of rules," said the Taoiseach.

"He made the point that there had been an election in Greece, a change of Government and that has to be reflected and recognised. Secondly, in  respect of rules, he said where there are contracts, they have to be honoured," Mr Kenny added.

Online Editors

Also in Business