Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

EYE ON AFRICA

Tanzania investigates ferry disaster which killed at least 227

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Presidential parody: the unofficial Elysée shop

Read more

THE DEBATE

Iran Under Pressure: Tehran Vows Retaliation After Ahvaz Attack

Read more

FOCUS

Germany: Where providing information on abortion remains a crime

Read more

ENCORE!

Music show: ‘Big Brothers’ Winston McAnuff & Fixi

Read more

IN THE PRESS

'Back from golfing dead': Tiger Woods overcomes pain and scandal to win first tour in 5 years

Read more

PERSPECTIVE

Julien Brave NoiseCat: ‘Pipelines a real threat to First Nations’ way of life’

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

Austrian government spokesman: ‘Still possible to agree on Brexit deal before end of October’

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

Playing fair and paying fair: Copyright law gets an internet-age overhaul

Read more

Europe

Greek 'No' does not mean Grexit, Tsipras says

© AFP | Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras makes a live address following the July 5 referendum.

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2015-07-08

Greece’s Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said on Sunday that the ‘No’ victory in the country’s bailout referendum did not mean Athens was headed for a so-called Grexit.

“This is not a mandate of rupture with Europe, but a mandate that bolsters our negotiating strength to achieve a viable deal,” Tsipras said in a televised address, adding that the vote showed that “democracy won’t be blackmailed”.

Tsipras said Greece is willing to return to talks, but “this time the issue of debt will be on the negotiating table”, insisting that an International Monetary Fund report seen this week “confirms Greek views that restructuring the debt is necessary”.

“The Greek people made a historic and brave choice,” he tweeted, as thousands of Athenians gathered in central Syntagma Square to celebrate the result. “Their response will alter the existing dialogue in Europe,” he said.

Official results from over 95 percent of polling stations showed more than 61 percent of Greeks had voted ‘No’ to creditor demands for further austerity in return for further bailout funds.

"Tsipras was trying to get a message of unity across tonight, he sought to rectify the divide caused by the referendum and show that the Greeks need to go to Europe as one to achieve a better deal,” FRANCE 24’s Greece correspondent Nathalie Savaricas said.

But Savaricas warned that while Greeks awarded Tsipras a strong mandate with the ‘No’ vote, he now has a matter of days to reach a deal in Brussels. “Tsipras is strong as long as the banks last,” she said. “The banks are all but without money: essentially they have until Tuesday, or Wednesday until collapse.”

A European official close to the talks told FRANCE 24’s Meabh McMahon in Brussels that Sunday's result meant a deal would unlikely be met in the coming days or weeks. “From officials here it doesn’t look good, it really seems like a stalemate,” she said.

'The ball is in the court of the European Union'

'Very regrettable'

Germany’s vice chancellor rejected Tsipras's claims that the vote would better their chances in negotiations with creditors, saying the Greek government was leading its people “onto a path of bitter austerity and hopelessness”.

Sigmar Gabriel told German daily Tagesspiegel that Tsipras had “torn down the last bridges across which Europe and Greece could move towards a compromise".

“By saying no to the eurozone’s rules, as is reflected in the majority ‘No’ vote, it’s difficult to imagine negotiations over an aid package for billions,” he said.

Head of the Eurogroup of eurozone finance ministers, Jeroen Dijsselbloem, said the ‘No’ vote was “very regrettable for the future of Greece”.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel discussed the outcome of Greece’s referendum with French President François Hollande in a telephone call Sunday evening, with both agreeing the ‘No’ vote must be respected, a German government spokesman said.

“The chancellor and the president are in favour of calling for a summit of eurozone heads of state and government heads on Tuesday,” the spokesman said.

The two leaders were meeting in Paris on Monday to discuss the outcome of the referendum and future steps.

WHO IS ALEXIS TSIPRAS?

There are no explicit provisions in EU rules for summits of eurozone leaders, but they can be held in exceptional circumstances. The last such summit was held in Brussels last month.

In Athens, Greek opposition leader Antonis Samaras announced his resignation in response to the result.

Samaras, the 64-year-old former prime minister, announced his decision to step down in a televised address after campaigning for a “Yes” vote. “I understand that our great party needs a new start," he said.

'A REALITY CHECK FOR CREDITORS'

You can catch up on all of the day’s developments on our liveblog.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP, AP)

Date created : 2015-07-05

  • GREECE

    Greeks head to polls to decide financial future

    Read more

  • PORTUGAL - GREECE

    Video: Portuguese rally in support for Greece ‘No’ vote

    Read more

  • GREECE

    Defiant Greeks vote 'No' in challenge to EU leaders

    Read more

COMMENT(S)