Copenhagen/Brussels - European Greens strongly condemn declarations by José Barroso, the current President of the European Commission, suggesting Greece should "obey or get off the euro-train".
“Barroso’s ultimatum is a counterproductive act of arrogance,” said the European Green Party (EGP) co-chair Monica Frassoni, speaking from the 16th Council of the European Greens in Copenhagen. “The only answers to Greek citizens and voters from the Commission’s President cannot be a threat to be thrown out of the Eurozone. This threat is an act of arrogance towards Greek voters.
The EU institutions should remind Greeks of their responsibilities, but should also be opening a European perspective based on solidarity to get out of the current stalemate. Barroso’s attitude can only foster more anti-EU feelings and the deepening of the Eurocrisis.”
Top EU officials have indicated that Greece should leave the Eurozone if unable to stick to the austerity measures imposed by European creditors. The political crisis currently unfolding in Athens is making this scenario not altogether impossible.
“We must stand together against the erosion of hope, in Greece and elsewhere and we have to show that another way is possible. An urgent signal of solidarity should be given by putting at the disposal of the Greek people EU funds to be redirected towards supporting welfare and Green jobs creation.
"Even more urgent is to renegotiate the timeframe of the memorandum, and to reconsider the redistribution of the burden of measures more equally among Greek society, which is not the case at the moment.”
Unemployment in Greece stands at almost 21% with youth unemployment at twice that figure. There has been a 25% increase in homelessness over the past three years. Almost 28% of Greeks are at risk of poverty or social exclusion.
Since the beginning of the Eurocrisis, the Greens have been pushing for a greater level of economic solidarity towards European countries in difficulty, namely Greece, advocating a system of Eurobonds, public-private bank recapitalisation, making the European Financial Stability Fund (EFSF) more robust and lowering the Greek debt burden to a realistic level.