Destinations Magazine

Greek Politics: Tsipras’s Travels

By Stizzard

RATINGS for the evening news soared this week as Greeks tuned into a new show: of Alexis Tsipras, their new prime minister, and his colourful finance minister, Yanis Varoufakis, sharing the spotlight as they separately toured European Union capitals. For Greeks worn down by five years of austerity, it was cheering to see their new leaders “standing up to the euro-zone bosses”, as an official from PAME, the communist trade union, put it.Mr Tsipras’s Syriza party has lost no time getting its anti-austerity message across since defeating Antonis Samaras’s New Democracy government on January 25th. Syriza fell two seats short of a majority in parliament, so Mr Tsipras signed up the Independent Greeks, a right-wing anti-austerity party, whose leader, Panos Kammenos, became defence minister.True to Syriza’s promises, Mr Tsipras and Mr Varoufakis challenged their first visitors, Martin Schulz, president of the European Parliament, and Jeroen Dijsselbloem, chairman of the eurogroup of finance ministers, demanding an end to austerity, the dismantling of the “troika” of the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the IMF, and an international conference to restructure Greece’s debt of 175% of GDP. In return, the Syriza government would crack down on tax evasion and corruption, which previous administrations ignored, and produce a programme of structural reforms in June.To…

The Economist: Europe

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