Friday 23 March 2018

Politicians warn Greek voters won't accept EU deal on debt

Paul Murphy
Paul Murphy
Niall O'Connor

Niall O'Connor

Irish politicians in support of the stance taken by the Syriza-led Greek government said they do not believe EU leaders are willing to commit to a package that will satisfy Greek voters.

Anti-Austerity Alliance TD Paul Murphy, who is today travelling back to Dublin from Athens, said any deal must involve a significant lifting of debt.

"So far all we've heard from the likes of Germany is that the Greek debt is sustainable. It's not.

"If that position remains, I don't believe there will be any basis for a deal that is acceptable," Mr Murphy told the Irish Independent.

Sinn Féin MEP for Midlands North West, Matt Carthy, said the approach taken by EU leaders will be viewed as a "clear indication of the directions and values of the EU".

"Now is the time to reaffirm the founding principles of the European Union - solidarity, democracy and equality.

"The treatment of Greece and other peripheral countries during the financial crisis in particular has demonstrated a growing shift away from these core values," Mr Carthy said.

"The emergency summit provides an opportunity for the Irish Government in particular to place itself on the right side of history," he added.

Meanwhile, the chairman of the Oireachtas Foreign Affairs Committee, Pat Breen, said there is serious concern about the level of tax avoidance in Greece.

He said there is also a significant pension crisis in Greece that must be addressed.

"We need Greece to come up with proposals now that are reliable, realistic and which allow people to get into a programme that they must with it," he added.

Irish Independent

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