In Brussels, Alexis Tsipras, Greek MP and President of Synaspismos, met with Mr Karas and Mr Liêm Hoang Ngoc, to be briefed about the progress of the ongoing inquiry by the Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee of the European Parliament on the role of the troika in the countries under Memorandum, Tsipras said: “We came mainly to listen.”
Tsipras, from Greek’s political left, said: “We reminded our two interlocutors of what is now commonplace internationally: the Greek programme has failed. We then handed SYRIZA’s report on the humanitarian crisis in Greece to them. It registers the extent and the depth of the social catastrophe caused by the two Memoranda. It explains why containing the humanitarian crisis should be a political priority.”
“The pictures that we are familiar with, that is of well-dressed men and women looking for food in garbage cans in Athens and the other main cities, stigmatize the whole of Europe. The recent death of a child from a brazier because electricity was cut off at home should awaken Europe – both governments and peoples – to the fact of what is actually going on in Greece under austerity and the Memorandum. Life, not death, is the prospect that we choose for our children.
“In the course of the meeting, we laid out SYRIZA’s proposal: to extend the duration and broaden the scope of the mandate of the inquiry group, so that it includes in the hearings process all those who have been involved and, in general, all those with positions of responsibility who can contribute to the inquiry. We believe that the complicated issue of the Memoranda should be exhaustively researched as to the goals and the interests that it served.”
He added: “The conclusions of the inquiry of that Committee could be evaluated and employed by the next, newly-elected European Parliament. European citizens have the right and should know. In particular, during a politically sensitive period, when endless austerity menaces not only the cohesion of European societies but also Democracy per se. Without transparency, continuous democratic, parliamentary and social control, without ending austerity in Europe, that is, without immediately abandoning the neoliberal strategy and changing overall course, the Eurozone would be a greenhouse of pauperization, of the extreme right and fascism.”
“Irrespective of the procedures and the conclusions of the European Parliament, the government of SYRIZA will proceed with an in-depth inquiry of the conditions surrounding the decision to subsume Greece into the Memorandum. It will shed light on the responsibility of those directly or indirectly involved, without any exception. This is our commitment to the Greek people.”