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Leaders of EU-South meet in Athens for Solidarity Summit, their FinMins grill Greece in the Eurogroup

A great day for the solidarity of the European South. Heads of states and governments flocked to Athens for a working lunch with side dish: talks about Economy, Migration and Security. They talked about “social Europe”, “soft power” and “beauty” – so said Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi.

Summit host Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said ”We believe in Europe and we must express our determination to overcome the challenges that we are facing, fighting against isolation and the powers of xenophobia and terrorism. These initiatives are a positive contribution to the dialogue on the future of Europe.” And he assured the rest of conservative Europe that might be worried about this getting together of leaders of the EU South that ”we do not want to become another divisive initiative.”

Friday morning German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble had ironically commented on the EU MED Summit saying “when socialists comes together nothing good comes of it.” Schaebule had obviously ignored that president Anastasiades from Cyprus and Prime Minister Costa from Portugal are his ideological partners in the European Parliament. Conservative Spain was represented by a state secretary and not Prime Minister Rajoy.

EUMed-Summit_Athens-2016_1

 

Anyway, the leaders of Greece, France, Italy, Cyprus, Malta, Portugal and Spain’s representative adopted a declaration in which they underlined their strong  commitment to European unity.

They stressed that “the European Union needs a new impulse in order to address the common challenges the Member States are facing, upholding its values of freedom, democracy and rule of law, as well as tolerance and solidarity.”

They also agreed that

  • The internal and external security of Europe incl. the protection of EU’s external borders must be ensured
  • The cooperation in the Mediterranean and with African countries must be reinforced
  • Growth and Investment in Europe must be fostered. Among others “Foster investment by doubling the financing capacity of the European Fund for Strategic Investment (“Juncker Plan”), focusing on key priorities such as digital economy, low-carbon projects for energy, including energy interconnections and transport, infrastructure as well as research and training.
  • Programmes for youth must be strengthened
  • The challenge of migration must be addressed

While the five leaders and Spain had a fun time in Athens, their finance ministers were grilling Greek Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos in the Eurogroup meeting in Bratislava.

For one more time, the President of the Eurogroup Jeroen Dijsselboem and the rest of finance ministers agreed in one voice and for one more time that Greece has to implement the prior actions of the 3rd bailout program as soon as possible. They warned Greece to step up its efforts and  and complete all 15 prior-actions needed in order to meet its bailout-commitments and begin the second review of the Greek Program.

“I admit that some of the timetables agreed last summer were not absolutely realistic,” Dijssebloem told reporters adding “However, the Greek authorities need to accelerate, no more time can be lost, the excuse of the summer cannot be used any more, we need to speed up because there are important decisions to be taken before the end of the year.”

Schaeuble agreed saying “I am waiting for the institutions’ report as for the implementation of those agreed in July.”

Of course, EU’s Economy Commissioner Pierre Moscovici agreed and I did not hear of any Eurozone member state FinMin who did not agree.

The disbursement of the 2.8billion euro bailout tranche is expected when the second program review concludes. Representatives of the lenders are expected to start visiting and auditing Greece by next week.

Result: when it comes to money, solidarity is nice on paper but reality shows no mercy.

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11 comments

  1. Only Grillo will rescue south. Euro will die fast

    • Giaourti Giaourtaki

      Grillo’s party corruption is on high speed, just look at the freshly elected major of Rome jumping from scandal to scandal, she won’t resign for betraying the voters, if only for betraying the party

  2. paf….nothing.

  3. Powerless summit, who are they going to relocate ? they might as well get used to the fact that the illegal migrants in their countries will stay in their countries. The 250million from the selling of licenses should be given as a tax rebate to Greek citizens, pretty obvious these current people have no idea of financial management,so, it would be preferable to give Greek taxpayers rebates.

    • Kindly stop it with the far right claim of “illegal migrants”. The vast majority of arrivals in Greece in 2015 and 2016 are refugees from war zones. The fact that Europe has been taken over by hysterical neo-Nazi morons is no reason why all of the EU should break the laws of the EU and international law. The refugees in Greece have to be relocated: end of discussion. If the northern European countries cannot accept the rule of law — and it is primarily eastern Europe and the UK who are in this category — then they should be drummed out of the EU and expelled from the UN Security Council. The UK has no place there anyway, since the country has nothing to offer the world these days.

      • Greece has no idea who the illegal immigrants are . just saying the illegal immigrants have to be relocated because it is something you say, means nothing. comments indicate a serious lack of knowledge about the UK.put some water upstairs as it is somewhat thick up there.The countries shut their borders and they have a right to do so,it doesn’t matter what you think in Greece, those are the constitutions of those countries.it is Govt. responsibility to carry out the constitution, realise you in Greece have little idea of what that means, or you wouldn’t be in the mess you are in,and waiting on countries like the UK to bail you out. you will eat fava and AT and Syriza will be laughing at you while they do cocktails in London.as for your view that the UK has little to offer, your main negotiator Tsakalotos was educated in the UK, guess it was good enough for him…right.get real.

        • i don’t know what makes you think that you have the right to post propaganda here, but the EU agency EASO registers all the irregular immigrants arriving in Greece. Note the term “irregular”. This is a legal issue because you cannot be an illegal immigrant if you are a refugee. You are the one who is breaking the law, by using hate speech and inciting xenophobia. Are you Hungarian?
          ~
          Clearly, you have no training in law and have the temerity to post nonsense here about constitutions and such rubbish. The law that all of Europe is REQUIRED to apply is EU law, from the EU Treaties, which since 1999 have explicitly referenced unconditional acceptance of the UN 1951 Convention on Refugees. Moreover, all EU constitutions also do so — because they would not have been allowed into the EU otherwise.
          ~
          Of course, the UK has no constitution and thinks it can do as it likes. The uneducated yobs such as your good self are about to learn a nasty lesson from Brexit. Moreover, you appear not to be able to comprehend from English text when somebody is a Brit and highly educated. Do you really think I am a Greek?

          • …Greece registers illegals..yeah…….keep living in your own little world .quit wasting space and people’s time with your idiotic point of view…it is rotten.

          • If you had learned to read English adequately, you would have understood that EASO registers refugees on the Aegean islands. EASO is the EU agency. On the mainland, UNHCR is involved in helping the Greek state sort out the issues of registration. The problem is more with the large numbers and the refusal of certain EU countries to obey the law and accept refugees into their country. Hungary is the worst case – -a country that should be expelled from the EU and told to go back to COMECON.

      • Giaourti Giaourtaki

        Mexicans look much more American than Trump and all these invaders, to make America great again means to relocate them to Europe, America is too hot for them anyway and it’s no Christian nation, it belongs Manitou.

  4. Giaourti Giaourtaki

    It’s only border protection because if the EU would guarantee the borders France would loose weapon deals.
    If this summit would have happened last year German politicians and their racist Goebbels-media would have been hunting Anti-Greek full time since months hoping to ignite some pogroms.