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Athens Macedonian News Agency: News in English, 12-06-14

Athens News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Samaras: Salvation gov't after elections
  • [02] Venizelos: Break artificial polarization
  • [03] Unemployment shoots to 22.6pct in Q1, youth the hardest hit

  • [01] Samaras: Salvation gov't after elections


    New Democracy's (ND) programme is cost-estimated in euros, whereas other programmes either don't exist or are essentially calculated in "drachmas", although the parties are not saying so, ND leader Antonis Samaras charged in a nationally televised press conference on Wednesday.

    "We want to change the programme that exists now so as to create new jobs and remain in the euro. SYRIZA, on the other hand, speaks of an unilateral abrogation (of the Memorandum bailout terms) that creates a rift with the EU and exit from the euro. When you do that -- unilateral abrogation -- you will be forced to concede and, in the end accept, not only one but 10 Memorandums," Samaras said in reference to his criticism of the rival Radical Left Coalition (SYRIZA).

    ND, he continued, has clearly stated where the required money will come from for the recovery of the Greek economy. "We have explained where the needed liquidity for the National Strategic Reference Framework (NSRF), the recapitalisation of the banks, etc, will be generated from. We endorsed the Monti proposal inside the European framework. For us, the major issue is 'inside the euro', with a stable government, for a policy of growth and the creation of jobs. This is how the psychology in the market will change," Samaras said.

    Asked on the government to emerge from Sunday's repeat general elections and if he will be prime minister, Samaras replied that, in a democracy, it is self-evident that the leader of the first party in votes is the prime minister.

    "Do you think that the post of prime minister will be enviable? Do you think that many will be clamoring for it, especially without having asked it from the Greek people? And why are the Greek people voting, to have a prime minister who did not emerge from the elections?" he asked.

    Samaras stressed the need for a salvation government to be formed after the elections, adding his optimism that the lack of governance will not be perpetuated.

    Asked which parties he would cooperate with, Samaras said that, without exclusions from the outset, a government must be formed with a policy framework for Greece's stay in the euro and renegotiation of the Memorandum.

    "It is obvious that things can't go on as they are, we had received the people's message, which is for cooperation and staying in the euro. I believe that a government will be formed, but we cannot set out prohibitive conditions. For example, Mr. Venizelos wants an ecumenical government, but what will happen if the other parties don't accept? Mr. Tsipras wants a Left government, but the others don't accept. I say that the country needs a strong government, which I call a salvation government," Samaras said.

    On the developments in the EU, he said that strong countries of Europe, such as Spain, are five times the problem that Greece is.

    "I believe that through alliances with countries facing similar problems, through friendships with people who play key roles, we can gain from the fact that Europe is changing and following a new policy. Greece is being given an opportunity to achieve the same. If we abrogate (the Memorandum), Greece will become the 'black sheep', and some quarters want this, the black sheep being eaten by the wolf in order to be used as an example," Samaras continued.

    He expressed certainty that European partners are ready to commence a substantive discussion for amendments to the loan agreement, stressing that "all accept the fact that the solution must be a European one".

    Samaras further noted that when he sent his letter of guarantee to Greece's partners, he included the word 'amendment', and the letter was accepted.

    "This is important. It has to do with the aspect of growth," he added

    [02] Venizelos: Break artificial polarization

    AMNA/ PASOK party leader Evangelos Venzelos, addressing the party's main election rally in the Piraeus district of Korydallos on Wednesday evening, stressed that the future for Greece was "looming extremely dangerous, as it appeared from the recent interviews by New Democracy party leader Antonis Samaras and Radical Left Coalition (SYRIZA) leader Alexis Tsipras."

    Venizelos added that there is no scenario that can leave any party out of the responsibility for the country's future and once again raised his proposal for "national joint responsibility governance."

    He also referred to the "artificial polarisation" scene which, as he said, must break because it is leading the country to deadlock and added that if this climate does not break the coutry will not have a viable government on June 18.

    The PASOK leader further said that in order for the future of the young generation to be saved and the country to have hope, PASOK's proposal must be implemented on national joint responsibility governance with the participation of all the parties.

    Referring to the election result of May 6, Venizelos said the people called for three things: the country must steadfastly continue its course in the euro, the unfavourable terms of the loan contract to change without the achievements being harmed and for there to be cooperation between all parties because no one can rule alone.

    [03] Unemployment shoots to 22.6pct in Q1, youth the hardest hit

    AMNA/ Greek unemployment shot to 22.6 percent in the first quarter of the year, with the unemployed persons exceeding 1.1 million, according top a Labour Force Survey released by the independent Hellenic Statistical Authority (ELSTAT) on Thursday.

    ELSTAT said that in the 1st Quarter of 2012 the number of employed amounted to 3,837,950 persons while the number of unemployed amounted to 1,120,097. The unemployment rate was 22.6% compared with 20.7% in the previous quarter, and 15.9% in the corresponding quarter of 2011

    The number of employed persons decreased by 2.4% compared with the previous quarter, and by 10.7% compared with the 1st Quarter of 2011. The number of unemployed persons increased by 9.2% compared with the previous quarter and by 57.3% compared with the 1st Quarter of 2011.

    The unemployment rate for females (26.5%) is considerably higher than the unemployment rate for males (19.7%).

    By observing the unemployment rate for different age groups, we notice that the highest unemployment rate is recorded among young people in the age group of 15-24 years (52.7%). For young females, the unemployment rate is 60.4%, ELSTAT said.

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