Defiant Greek PM stands ground on referendum

Defiant Greek PM stands ground on referendum
Updated 01 July 2015

Defiant Greek PM stands ground on referendum

Defiant Greek PM stands ground on referendum

BRUSSELS: Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has vowed to push ahead with a controversial bailout referendum despite pressure from European leaders, and urged creditors to accept a fresh reform offer by Athens.
Hours after Greece became the first advanced economy to default on the IMF, the leftist leader used a televised address to tell Greeks to vote ‘No’ on Sunday to creditor austerity demands.
European ministers were due to consider a new proposal from Athens but German Chancellor Angela Merkel has already insisted there can be no new deal before the referendum.
“A ‘No’ vote does not signify a rupture with Europe, but a return to the Europe of values,” Tsipras told the nation, rebutting accusations from EU leaders that the plebiscite was essentially a vote on whether to stay in the union.
“Come Monday, the Greek government will be at the negotiating table after the referendum, with better terms for the Greek people,” he added, standing between Greek and EU flags.
The radical Greek leader spoke hours after Merkel effectively ruled out all negotiations until after Sunday, saying that Europe could “calmly” await the outcome of the referendum.