PM pleas for fair deal: Alexis Tsipras EU Parliament
Published: July 8, 2015
PM pleas for fair deal: Alexis Tsipras EU Parliament, Greek prime minister Alexis Tsipras has told the European parliament he will submit “credible” reform plans to the eurozone on Thursday as Greece seeks a three-year loan to meet its debt obligations.
He promised Greece would start pension and tax reforms next week, as demanded by creditors, in return for the bailout and remaining in the eurozone.
“The Greek government … will tomorrow file new concrete proposals, credible reforms, for a fair and viable solution,” Mr Tsipras told the parliament in Strasbourg on Wednesday.
Mr Tsipras said he was determined to fix years of bad government as well as reverse the increasing inequalities caused by five years of creditor-imposed austerity.
He also reiterated Greece’s commitment to staying in the eurozone.
“Let me assure the house that, quite apart from the crisis, we will continue with our reform undertakings,” said Mr Tsipras, who was greeted with cheers to a packed chamber in Strasbourg, Germany from fellow leftists but also from anti-European Union members on the far-right.
“We demand an agreement with our neighbours.
“But one which gives us a sign that we are on a long-lasting basis exiting from the crisis, which will demonstrate that there’s light at the end of the tunnel.
“Our prime objective must be to combat unemployment and to encourage entrepreneurship.”
Mr Tsipras was speaking after flying in from Brussels where eurozone leaders handed him a final deadline of Sunday to agree to terms for a new bailout.
The Greek leader spoke after Donald Tusk, the former Polish prime minister who chairs EU summits, told the parliament: “The stark reality is that we have only four days left to find an ultimate agreement.”
“Until now I’ve avoided talking about deadlines but I have to say it loud and clear that the final deadline ends this week,” he said.
Following Mr Tsipras’s 12-minute speech, party leaders took the floor in turn.
In the chamber some eurosceptics hailed Mr Tsipras’s victory in a referendum by propping up cards reading “OXI” – “No” in Greek.
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