Last quote by Alexis Tsipras
Alexis Tsipras quotes
We are waiting for you to reach an understanding. But at the same time, don't ask for things you know cannot be done in an economy carrying the wounds created by your own mistakes.
I'm convinced (the review) will be concluded positively, it will be concluded promptly and, most importantly, it will be concluded without new measures after the programme expires (and) without the excessive demands some are putting on the table.
We want to heal the wounds of the crisis and help those who have made great sacrifices.
We support a fair and viable solution without guarantees, without occupation troops and without fear for the citizens of Cyprus.
We have delivered on our obligations and our creditors need to do their part. I'm optimistic that Greece will achieve its goals. But we will never accept the logic of 'eternal austerity' that destroys Greek society.
Our creditors need to keep in mind that the Greek people have made enough sacrifices and now it's time for them to fulfill their obligations. We are decisive that we will never surrender our people to the 'yes men' who want Greece in the straight jacket of austerity for many years ahead.
Our vision is that growth not only affects statistics and figures but that it heals wounds of the crisis and helps all those who made enormous sacrifices in the name of Europe and in the name of European stability.
We want it to heal the wounds of crisis and to alleviate all those who have over these difficult years made huge sacrifices in the name of Europe.
The projections for the Greek economy are extremely positive for next year.
Everything the Greek government does is within the framework of the agreement with the institutions. Both Greece and its lenders have to adhere to what has been agreed.
When we exceed targets and revenue by sticking to the programme, we will not seek anyone's permission to give this money to those who need it most.
We're moving towards the third consecutive year in which the government will achieve its goals. The goal of a surplus of 1.75 percent of GDP, which is part of the financial assistance agreement for 2017, is expected to be overachieved as well. The primary surplus is expected to reach two percent.
Greece, through its people's sacrifices, has carried and still carries the weight of Europe on the migration and on the financial crisis front. It's time for Europe to recognise this in practice.
Steady to our commitment to support the weak, we decided to immediately distribute most of our outperformance in 2016 revenues to low income pensioners.
It is absolutely impossible to maintain a primary surplus of 3.5% after 2018 if we are not to drown the Greek economy.
Goodbye, commandante. Until the peoples' eternal victory.
Our government received a mandate to pull the country out of the crisis, with society standing upright, smashing this vicious circle of austerity ... to restore the wounded democracy in our country during the era of bailouts.
Let me point out that it was one thing that we knew about Donald Trump when he was seeking to become the candidate for the Republican Party, another thing during the election period, and now that he is the President-elect, and it's quite another when he will be the president of a country that is a major player, a global player.
I did not wish to repeat the criticisms that many of have made during the election period.
It is a great honor that you are visiting Greece during your final Europe tour to give a special message to the world.
The negotiation can and will be concluded on time, for us to have positive decisions at the Eurogroup on Dec. 5. In other words, to begin talks for specific short-term, mid-term and long-term measures for Greek debt relief.
In other words, to begin talks for specific short-term, mid-term and long-term measures for Greek debt relief.
We have the opportunity for a new start that will give us the necessary impetus for the last critical steps of a marathon leading us to brighter days.
We have to repair what is going wrong, to change certain attitudes and take all the action needed to pull the country out of the long-lasting economic crisis. We have made all the necessary changes in the cabinet to do this.
We are almost certain that this year will close with a positive growth rate after many years, a small but positive growth rate.
As we abide by the accord, we expect the same thing from our partners. No delays, no foot dragging, no postponement will be tolerated.
(Former prime ministers) all promised that within six months just around the corner we have a recovery coming, (but) It is impossible to have a recovery coming when tax rates keep going up.
By the end of the year we anticipate positive news on this front.
All data points to not only revenue doing well ... but that we entered a positive growth cycle from the third quarter of 2016. For 2017 we expect growth will approach three percent.
If from our part, as Europe, we don't honor our commitments, if we don't implement a difficult agreement, then we will once again be faced by major deadlocks.
In Greece today, the challenge of humane and affective refugee and migration management is tested. If we, the international community, fail in supporting this effort not only the social, but also the political repercussions will be felt, not only in Greece but anywhere.
From Europe's side there is an obligation that must be accelerated. Because what is this (EU-Turkey) agreement? We halt the illegal flows but we create legitimate flows. Which are the legitimate flows? It is the resettlement from Greece and the relocation directly from Turkey…and unfortunately from the 33,000 (reallocations and resettlements) promised by the EU in 2016 only 3,000 have taken place.
Our aim is not to focus on the number of EU states, neither more Europe nor less Europe, but a better Europe that will inspire again the European citizens.
This summit, this initiative, it is a positive step on the dialogue on the future of Europe. We're not and we don't wish to become one more little group, one more initiative which aims to divide and bring conflict in Europe.
It also proves our decision to remain in the eurozone was the right one. Our government managed to stabilise the economy taking harsh but necessary decisions. Now we need solidarity more than ever.
I would hope (the recent regional upheaval) would change the climate in which discussions of debt relief happen, just because it's the right thing to do on its own, and at a time when Greece is in a position of geopolitical significance, that's a good time to reinforce their fiscal future.
The British referendum will either serve as a wake-up call for the sleepwalker heading toward the void, or it will be the beginning of a very dangerous and slippery course for our peoples.
Greeks have already paid a lot, but this is probably the first time that the possibility of these sacrifices being the last is so evident.
European leaders will receive a message tonight, that Greece fulfils its obligations. Tomorrow, the other side must also take responsibility.
On our side we kept our obligations, both to the lenders and primarily to the Greek people – which is important because we are applying the deal using every possibility for flexibility with the goal of protecting society.
This non-aggressive fiscal adjustment – focused on the concern for the protection of the weak and of those with medium and low incomes, as well as the protection of our National Health and education systems – is bearing fruit, and the Greek economy appears now to be at the threshold of recovery. The prophesies of the modern day Cassandras who had been saying that we destroyed the economy while negotiating have been gloriously dismissed. Now is the time to make the right decisions.
We kept expenditure low, we gave a breath of fresh air to the economy by exploiting the EU's National Strategic Reference Framework that gave over five billion euros to the Greek economy and Greece was, for the first time, the number one country in absorbing those funds. We also had an excellent track record on tourism, we exceeded our targets on state revenues by two billion and we reduced unemployment by 1.5 percent.
Greece therefore has a surplus of 0.7 percent, that is 1 percent above target and does not need any extra (austerity) measures. What Greece needs is a necessary easing of the debt if the economy is to take off, the investors trust will be regained and we will return to growth, finally.
Greece's fiscal policy performance has exceeded any expectation in 2015, and don't forget how difficult this year was. We have had two general elections, one referendum, closed banks and also an unprecedented refugee crisis that fell almost entirely upon Greece's shoulders.
At this critical stage we must by no means allow some people to drive this country back to the darkness of recession. We must march forward and overcome the crisis for good.
Greece ... does not need extra measures. What Greece needs, is an essential debt relief.
Despite all that what does Eurostat tell us? That we had a primary surplus of 0.7 percent instead of the projected 0.25 percent primary deficit. That is to say that we exceeded the programme's target by nearly 1 percent. Let's not forget that at the same time the IMF forecasts were for a 1 percent (deficit) or 0.6 percent (deficit). We exceeded the IMF forecasts by 2.3 billion euros. And we did all this in a difficult year. Nothing happened by chance. Everything happened because we worked with vision, with patience and with persistence.
This is an island which has lifted all the weight of Europe upon its shoulders.
This constitutes a big disgrace for European civilization and for countries who want to become a part of European civilization.
It seems that some people are playing games with an aim to destabilize us. We will not allow (IMF's) Thomsen to destroy Europe.
I would like to stress that the implementation of this readmission agreement sends a clear message to migrants coming from third countries: there is neither the political will nor the ability to cross to Europe [within the frame of the measures we are taking].
We will not allow Greece or any other country to be turned into a warehouse of souls. We are at a crucial moment for the future of Europe.
At Monday's summit, Greece will demand that burden sharing be equitable among all countries in the bloc, and sanctions for those that do not.
It is certainly not my intention to say, look, I have a refugee crisis and that gives me leeway to operate beyond the framework of the (bailout) agreement. The agreement will be kept.
What we refuse to do is accept the transformation of our country into a permanent warehouse of souls and, at the same time, continue to act within the European Union and at summits as if there's nothing wrong.
We have presented our proposals on the pension reform, and informed the institutions (lenders) at the beginning of January. So far we don't have their official position.
We have made some commitments. We have made progress on these commitments. We will be completely ready with regard to these commitments in a month. What remains to be seen is whether Europe will meet its commitments toward Greece and toward an international problem. The refugee crisis isn't a Greek crisis. It's a European crisis and we must find European solutions for European problems.
Our goal was, and still is, the deep and radical reform of the economic, productive and social model of the country. To support labour rights, employment; the broadening of the social state, the protection of public property, fair taxation, and the protection of the environment.
The progressive forces have to promote the need to return to the fundamental values of Europe, which are solidarity, democracy, social cohesion, but also to build a wall against economic policies that prepare the ground for the far-right that today threatens the future of Europe.
So the progressive forces must be united in order to face these big challenges…the extreme right policies and the forces that build fences and create a very bad atmosphere.
In Greece wrong policies were applied and it is a paradox that those who recognized that there were wrong policies, admitting their mistake, insist on applying the mistake.
The military interventions in the region were not to introduce democracy to these Middle East countries, but to serve interests, geopolitical interests that were wrong in their assessment by the governments of the West and the EU that they thought there would not be tragic consequences for the West.
Certain people need to understand that Greece has signed a deal that it will adhere to. But, it did not sign a deal to surrender its sovereignty, nor did it agree to the destruction of its social cohesion.
We have to decide what Europe we want. Do we want a Europe of solidarity or one which throws teargas, showing these people its harsh side?
Debt restructuring will reduce investment risks and make our economy once again attractive to investors.
My friends, the mandate that we have been given by the Greek people today is also a crystal clear message for us to untangle viciousness and a world of corruption that all these years have been governing this country.
I feel the deep ethical and political obligation to lay before your judgement everything I have done both right and wrong, achievements and omissions.
The verdict of the Greek people ends, beyond any doubt, the vicious circle of austerity in our country.
With your vote, you will judge if the agreement has the right conditions to break this impasse, to help revive the economy, and whether this helps us to put an end to memoranda and cruel austerity measures.
There will be a government. There will be no 'unnatural' government. Because what Mr. Meimarakis wants is an unnatural coalition. The country will either have a progressive government or a conservative government.
We fought to stay true to our promises. We negotiated hard and insistently, for a very long time, we held out against pressures and blackmail. It's true, we reached the limit. But we made the Greek issue into an international issue.
Despite the great difficulties that we have had throughout this period, despite the obstacle that some people even now seem intent on placing before us, I am optimistic.
If this is not dealt with at a European level and there is no substantial help, you all understand that the situation is very hard to resolve.
But there is another view, which is respected, that doesn't accept the government's analysis and believes there was an alternative available in the early morning hours of July 13. If this is the case….then I suggest the party hold a referendum on this crucial question.
This 'blackmail' that you refer to, do you believe it is real or imagined? If you believe it is imagined, then I am open to alternative options, and we can go forward that way. If, however, you believe the blackmail is real, then there is no other option than for all of us to share the burden of this responsibility.
We have had a tough battle for six months now and we fought until the end for the best deal, an agreement that will allow the country to stand on its feet. We faced tough decisions. We took tough decisions to prevent the realisation of extreme demands from the most conservative circles in Europe.
That is to say that for countries in a bailout programme we don't have to hold elections, we'll have to appoint governments, appoint technocrats and those will be responsible for the decisions.
I want to remind you Mr. Weber that the strongest moment of solidarity was in 1953 when your country came out indebted and looted after two world wars and Europe and all European countries showed the greatest solidarity in the 1953 London Agreement. And they decided to write off 60 percent of the German debt and agreed to a growth plan. That was the greatest moment of solidarity of recent European history.
And you're right that in Greece there are past solutions that have to be removed like for example early retirement and we first took the initiative to remove this without being told by anyone.
The Greek side will keep on trying, having in its arsenal the verdict of the Greek people, which was definite. The will of the Greek people is for a viable agreement which will end the discussion of a Grexit.
We gave an example of democracy. What is needed now is the forging of our national unity, to unanimously shape a strong national front, to restore normalcy in the economy. We also need to immediately find a solution to the problems in the negotiations with our partners.
Because we have to realise that Europe works through compromise and not through division.
In a nutshell, the main initiator of the memorandum is now confirming the argument of Greek government that the solution they give us doesn't lead to a sustainable exit from the crisis.
That Eurogroup decision has led to the European Central Bank curtailing the liquidity of the Greek banks, forcing the National Bank of Greece to suggest measures including a bank holiday and the restricting of withdrawals.
I don't believe that they want to kick us out of the euro and they won't. They won't, because the cost would be huge.
The bank deposits of the Greek people are fully secure. The same applies to the payment of wages and pensions–they are also guaranteed.
This, so that Greek voters can can choose freely without blackmail and pressure – as the Greek constitution imposes and as the values of the European Union enforce.
We want a comprehensive and viable solution that is accompanied by a strong growth package that will make the Greek economy viable. So that the country can stand on it's feet again. The ball is in the court of the European leadership.
Comrades, I believe that we are entering the final straight of the race. One could say that it is now that the real negotiations start and now the capabilities of the Greek government and its determination will be judged, its firm commitment to its goal, which is to find a fair solution.
We know these concessions will be difficult but we have submitted a realistic plan for Greece to exit the crisis.
We have made many steps forward and we are on the final course, we are close to a deal… it is obvious, we need to stay calm and decisive. We are not alone, we have to deal with three different institutions with often contradictory views.
The tragedy in Lampedusa and the shocking reality we face every day in the Aegean underline the need for the EU to develop an effective and human policy on immigration based on solidarity, particularly for the frontline Mediterranean countries.
With the February 20 agreement, the need is recognised for a discussion to be opened on the necessary restructuring of our debt as without such an intervention, the truth is, it is impossible to repay it.
The European Union needs bold political initiatives, that respect both democracy and the treaties, so that we can leave behind the crisis and to move towards growth.
Some have the nerve to talk about unilateral actions, and some in here have also repeated it. If they are doing it to frighten us, the answer is simple, they are not frightening us and this does not discourage us.
There is no danger to wages and pensions and no threat to bank deposits.
I feel that maybe for the first time, Greece has the resolute determination to go ahead with reforms, with cooperation from the institutions.
We are at a critical point in the negotiations, critical and sensitive. We are submitting proposals and I hope we will pass this obstacle, which will give us the possibility to move forward.
The verdict of the Greek people, your verdict, cancels today in an indisputable way the bailout agreements of austerity and disaster.
I take personal responsibility for an immediate solution, right after the democratic process. At the same time, I call on you to reinforce our negotiating effort: I am calling on you to say 'no' to the bailout conditions that are destroying Europe.
Greece cannot be blackmailed because democracy in Europe cannot be blackmailed.
I am very optimist that we will try to do our best in order to find the common viable and mutually acceptable solution for our common future.
We will prove Cassandra is wrong. We won't get into a mutually destructive clash but we will not continue a policy of catastrophe or subjection.
An era of national humiliation is over.
The mandate of the Greek people, your mandate, today cancels in an undisputed manner the memorandums of austerity and destruction. The mandate of the Greek people makes the troika a thing of past in our common European framework.
The new Greek government will be ready to cooperate and negotiate with the European Parliament.
We will not honour commitments and signatures that previous governments have given, and are not binding for the new Greek government.
We presented our recommendation for the need to have a democratic way out and for the people of Greece to choose their future; our recommendation is for a referendum on these measures.
Today we are opening the road to hope. Today we open the road to a better tomorrow with our people united, dignified and proud.
We just want to re-negotiate Greece's debts and to find a way to make these debts payable.
This is the time of democracy, this is the time of dignity, this is the time for our people to stand up. This is a crucial time.
Today the government of Mr. Samaras, which for 2.5 years ransacked our society and had already decided and agreed on new austerity measures, is over. With the will of the people, in the coming days, the laws on austerity will also become a thing of the past.
With the will of our people, in a few days, bailouts tied to austerity will be a thing of the past.The future has already begun.
Neither this parliament, nor the Greek people are going to sign a blank cheque to Mr. Samaras in order to let him carry on with the austerity measures that cut down on pensions and health services and ravage Greek society.
The alarmism of recent days has fallen into the void. The strategy of fear has collapsed. Tomorrow is a new day. A more optimistic day because democracy cannot be blackmailed.
I never asked for a 'No' vote in the referendum to pull us out of the euro zone, but rather to strengthen our negotiating hand. I didn't deceive the Greek people or the political leaders.
To answer the question of whether or not we've made mistakes during our five-month period of negotiation, the honest answer is to answer in the positive. Yes, we have made mistakes.
A large, clear victory for Syriza on Sunday ensures an end to the bailout programme, to the ransacking and destruction of the country, to subjection, and to indignity.
We're voting to tear down the wall of money, we're voting to overcome the north-south division, a division that cancels the European ideal and Europe itself.
If we want to get out from this crisis we have to invest in development and social cohesion, we have to stop with austerity.
In standing for office I have enormous respect for European taxpayers. I would argue that the European Left's proposals have the advantage of being sustainable and good for them too. Because by following the policy that Mrs Merkel advocates, Southern Europe will perpetually need new loans. Because austerity leads to a vicious circle of recession and new rounds of lending.
Let me take a different approach to that issue. Spain didn't have a bailout deal. However, they implement the same mixture of policies as those set out in memorandums for Greece and Portugal. Of course for some particular reasons – to do with dignity perhaps – that Spanish politicians could use as an excuse, Spain didn't end up in the same shameful position as Greece, where the Prime Minister cannot decide anything by himself, neither can the governmental majority, without asking some lowly troika officials who often suggest schizophrenic policies.
Never has the country, in the last 60 years, found itself in the dire situation it is in today. There is no doubt that the bailout is not the happiest of documents, as Mr. Stournaras called it, but that it has destroyed Greece and will go down in history as a tragedy.
Your policies have destroyed the country. The majority of the people suffer and live in despair.
Fourteen years ago six million people here were poor, today six million people have rights, they are equal citizens and that is Hugo Chavez's greatest contribution.
This catastrophe must end now. This mistake must be corrected immediately, not after the German elections take place and when it suits Angela Merkel, when it will be too late.
The negotiations and the discussions took place between (German Chancellor) Merkel and (the IMF's Christine) Lagarde and they made the compromise. The solution does not include Greece, it does not include a viable plan for Greece, that is why it is not a solution.
The government that will be formed with New Democracy at its core needs to seriously take into consideration that on big issues it can no longer proceed as previous governments have done.
Syriza guarantees Greece will not continue to be a guinea pig, with the whole burden of a crisis piled on the Greek people – a burden for which they are not responsible.
Thanks to the existence of this strong leftist force François Holland knows that he cannot renege on his promises so easily. Because if he does so, he'll become Hollandreou and start down the path that led to what we see happening now in Greece.
The problem with the country is and continues to be the disharmony between the current policy and political will. As long as they insist on the bailout, to a policy that the people have rejected, they cannot ensure social stability.
In life there is no such thing as a little bit pregnant, just as there is no such thing as a little bit of bailout agreement. Either there are wrong policies, just like the bailout, which we will continue in larger or smaller doses and it will lead us towards catastrophe, or, we will demand another solution, beyond these mistaken, catastrophic policies.
The national debt should be investigated by an international commission. There should be a moratorium on repayments. A fair and viable European solution is demanded. The crisis is not only Greece's doing. It is a European crisis, and a solution should be demanded within a European framework.
His signature and his commitment to the bailout are not a salvation but a tragedy for the people. We fully understand the difficulties the country is facing, but at the same time this decision [in the form of votes], taken by the people, creates possibilities for a radically different course.
Our primary commitment at this time is that we will honour the mandate the people are giving us to do whatever is possible to make sure the country will have a government which will condemn the bailout agreement and will cancel austerity measures.