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Athens News Agency: News in English, 08-12-16

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <>


  • [01] Papandreou: riots the 'tip of the iceberg'

  • [01] Papandreou: riots the 'tip of the iceberg'

    The recent rioting and demonstrations seen in Greece were just "the tip of the iceberg" according to main opposition PASOK leader George Papandreou, who said the shooting of the 15-year-old that sparked the incidents was a trigger but not their underlying cause.

    Papandreou made the claims in an interview given to the German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung on Sunday, that was also carried on the Deutsche Welle website.

    According to Greece's main opposition leader, the root of the riots lay in feelings of injustice and social inequality and the lack of prospects for many young people.

    He stressed, however, that the images that did the rounds in the world media over the past week were not a true reflection of Greece.

    Replying to a comment by the reporter conducting the interview - who said that many Greeks had nothing to gain from early elections because 'the corruption of New Democracy will be succeeded by that of PASOK' - Papandreou said that the present government had become "identified" with graft.

    "It is one thing for scandals to occur during the term of a government and another for a government to have become identified with corruption. And the present government cannot control the continuous scandals because it is itself a part of them," he said.

    PASOK's leader also rejected a suggestion that Greece had falsified its fiscal data in order to get into the Eurozone, saying that the present government had created this impression, which was highly damaging for Greece, for petty party-political reasons.

    He pointed out that the discrepancy in the figures came about because there were two legitimate methods for recording military spending, which was either when ordering or when equipment was delivered. The previous PASOK government's had chosen the latter method, while he blamed the Karamanlis government for "changing the system with the result that the deficit increased and the country was shown up."

    All this created the impression that Greece had been playing games and trying to hoodwink the EU, Papandreou asserted, whereas "in reality it was the Karamanlis government that was playing nasty games."

    On the prospect of early elections, Papandreou noted that the present crisis might blow over in a few days but the government had irretrievably lost the confidence of the electorate, adding that "what we have seen is just the tip of the iceberg".

    Caption: ANA-MPA file photograph of PASOK leader George Papandreou.

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