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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 4 July 2015
6 THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 4 JULY 2015 GREECE IN CRISIS Stakes rise in Greece CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 But EU leaders have framed the vote as a consultation on whether Greeks want to stay in the euro or not. If Tsipras's government obtains its 'NO' vote, it would send the eurozone “into the unknown”, French President Francois Hollande said on an African visit. While there is no legal mechanism to directly force Greece out of the eurozone, it could end up as a zombie member with no euros, analysts say. Greece’s Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis have both announced that they will quit if voters opt for a bailout. PHOTO: AP/PETROS GIANNAKOURIS. Varoufakis confident of debt deal IMF warns Greece of financial hole Greek Finance Minister said there's a “100 per cent chance” Athens will reach an agreement with its international creditors after a bailout referendum due on Sunday. "An agreement will be reached whether a 'YES' or 'NO' comes up through the ballot box," Yanis Varoufakis told BBC News in an interview on Thursday. "If it's a 'YES' it will be a bad agreement, the banks will open with a bad agreement ... If a 'NO' wins we are going to have another agreement which will be viable. Along the lines of the proposals made to us in the last few days." Varoufakis urged Greeks to vote against accepting the terms of the latest bailout proposal when they vote in Sunday's referendum, which could decide the future of the country in the eurozone. Both the prime minister and finance minister remain convinced Athens can negotiate better terms, including debt relief, if voters reject the conditions on offer. But both have signalled they will quit if voters choose the bailout. If voters back a bailout plan that he has scorned, the SYRIZA-ANEL government is likely to fall, leading to new elections by September. Varoufakis also sharply criticised the policy of austerity enacted in Greece over the last five years and the extended negotiations with international creditors. "We have a very bad system of governance in Europe. This is not the way to run a monetary union. This is a travesty. It's been a comedy of errors for five years now, Europe has been extending and pretending," he said. "The program that they imposed upon this country and which they want to continue imposing ... is going to go down in economic history as the greatest cock-up ever." However, the International Monetary Fund delivered a stark warning on Thursday of the huge financial hole facing Greece as angry and uncertain voters prepare for a referendum that could decide their country's future in Europe. The assessment, in a preliminary draft of the fund's latest debt sustainability report, underlines the scale of the problems facing Athens, whatever the result of Sunday's referendum on the bailout offered by creditors last month. Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras' rejection of what he terms the "blackmail" of EU and IMF creditors demanding spending cuts and tax hikes has so angered Greece's partners that there is no hope of reconciliation before Sunday. With banks closed for a fourth day and capital controls in place, the future of the left-wing government hangs on the result, given the angry mood of voters in Greece, torn between resentment of the lenders and scorn for their own politicians. Sources: AFP, Reuters The head of the Eurogroup of finance ministers, Jeroen Dijsselbloem, said: “In case of a 'NO', Greece's situation will become exceptionally difficult.” Duelling pro-'YES' and -'NO' demonstrations have been held in Athens this week, gathering thousands, and more are to take place on Friday. Greece's top administrative court, the Council of State, is also to rule Friday on the legality of the rushed referendum, announced only last weekend. Voter surveys have given no reliable indication of how the plebiscite, if held, would fall. One poll leaked to Greek media on Thursday put the 'NO' camp at 43.2 per cent, and the 'YES' leading with 47.1 per cent. But the survey company involved, GPO, issued a statement warning the poll was only “fragmentary” and not meant to be made public. The world's financial markets and Greece's creditors - the European Commission, European Central Bank (ECB) and the IMF - have largely stepped back to watch the outcome. “Greece may be out of the spotlight for the time being, but it should not be forgotten, and this weekend could be the end of the line for Greece and the euro,” said David Madden, market analyst at IG trading group. Greece's finance minister Yanis Varoufakis told Australian radio his country was on a “war footing” to get the referendum ready in time. Varoufakis also said “yes, we may very well” resign and handover to a caretaker administration. Australia stands with Greeks CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 This Sunday 5 July, the people of Greece are called to make a critical decision about their future within the eurozone in a referendum. Greeks are called to vote either 'YES' to another round of harsh demands imposed by the EU, ECB and IMF, or 'NO' to further austerity, which will lead the country in uncharted territory. In a show of solidarity, the people of Melbourne are hold- ing a peaceful demonstration today, Saturday 4 July, outside the Parliament Of Victoria. Organised by The Greek Ambassadors (Πρεσβευτές της Ελλάδας) non-profit organisation, the official rally will begin at 1.00 pm and will be joined by thousands of expatriate Greeks. A second rally is also being held in Victoria which will start from the Oakleigh Station Square Shopping Centre's entrance at 6.30 pm. Down under Greek communities are pressured to send money back home, hence an Australian Hellenic Initiative has been set up so locals can raise money for crisis relief for poor families. Brisbane's Greeks have been called to join a solidarity march held in Brisbane's King George Square today, at 10.00 am. "Please join us in this historic moment and let the Greek people know that Syd- ney stands with Greece," says Christine Stamatis Hatzikalimnios. Mrs Hatzikalimnios started a Facebook page to support a peaceful demonstration outside the Sydney Opera House on the same day from 1.00 pm until 2.30 pm. "We stand for democracy and whatever the Greek people decide. We trust that they are capable of making their own decisions for their country," she adds. Sydneysiders rally for Greece Protesters warn of ‘burden placed on the shoulders of future Greek generations’ MICHAEL SWEET Scores of Greek Australians and their supporters gathered on Sunday outside the offices of the World Bank Group (IMF) to demonstrate their support and solidarity with the Greek people. The protest, organised by the Australia Greece Solidarity Campaign, heard from a number of speakers from the Greek and broader community who implored the crowd to grow solidarity with Greece. The event's organisers said the demonstration - one day after the Greek government announced the referendum - was about saying "no to blackmail and austerity and yes to a democratic response empowering the people themselves DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM Concerned for future generations: protesters outside the Martin Place offices of the World Bank/IMF last Sunday. to determine their future”. The rally, attended by around 100 people, also carried "by acclamation" a resolution calling for the referendum in Greece to "be allowed to proceed and the result to be respected by the troika", and that the IMF and European governments should "stop blackmailing the Greek people in their attempts to impose another austerity package". Spokesperson for the Australia Greece Solidarity Campaign, Arthur Rorris said: "This is now a question of dignity and democracy. "The truth about the unrealistic demands from the troika is starting to circulate as is the fact this is a European crisis - not just a Greek one." Mr Rorris added that the challenge for Australia was "to ensure that our community understands the depths of this crisis and burden placed on the shoulders of future Greek generations and that another sustainable solution is possible". Mr Harry Danalis, president of the Greek Orthodox Community of NSW, who also spoke at the rally said: "GOCNSW shares the apprehension and concern of the people in Greece and their demands for a referendum to allow the people to accept or reject the bailout package. "I have no doubt that there will be a continuation of the solidarity movement here in Australia among the Greek and broader community to 'give Greece a chance' in these critical times."
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