• Spain's news in English
Podemos leads criticism of Greek bailout deal
A protester arguing with police outside the Greek parliament on July 13th. Photo: AFP

Podemos leads criticism of Greek bailout deal

The Local/AFP · 14 Jul 2015, 08:31

Published: 14 Jul 2015 08:31 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

While the leaders of key eurozone countries expressed relief at the proposed deal, parties from Britain's right-wing UKIP to Spain's radical left Podemos said Greece had been stitched up.

The deal even sparked a trending Twitter hashtag, #ThisIsACoup, which became one of the most used terms online on the social network in Greece, France, Germany and Britain.

Critics abroad saw Greece as a victim of financial bullying - notably in Spain, which has been rattled over recent years by fears of contagion of eurozone financial instability and holds a general election this year.

"What they are trying to do in Greece is launch a financial coup d'etat and convert it into a protectorate," said Pablo Echenique, a regional deputy from Podemos. "There is no European solidarity."

German Chancellor Angela Merkel led eurozone leaders in persuading Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to push through tough cash-saving reforms in return for a third rescue package worth between €82 and €86 billion ($95 billion).

Under the deal, Tsipras has to introduce tough conditions on labour reform and pensions, VAT and taxes and privatisation measures by Wednesday.

Negotiations 'at gunpoint'

In France, an opposition group allied to Podemos and Syriza, the Party of the Left, joined in condemnation of the way Greece was treated in negotiations led by Merkel and French President Francois Hollande.

"That's how the European Union is. A revolver to the head, a nation choked and placed under a financial blockade, which has to make a so-called agreement after 17 hours of talks," said the party's co-founder Jean-Luc Melenchon.

A failure to reach a deal would have likely led to a collapse of Greek banks within days unless the country de facto exited the eurozone by introducing a new currency.

The financial terms of the deal are much the same that was on offer, but now include Greece being forced to put state assets into a privatisation fund that is expected to generate €50 billion in revenue.

And Athens will be on a short leash, with the government needing to get the approval of the European Commission, European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund before making public draft legislation or submitting it to lawmakers.

Italy's prominent anti-euro Five Star protest party leader Beppe Grillo accused eurozone leaders of using a "strategy of terror".

"The humiliation of Greece is a warning to all countries who want their sovereignty to be recognised," he said.

Criticism flared in another southern European country sensitive to eurozone jitters: Portugal, which in 2011 was bailed out by international creditors as Greece had been a year earlier.

"This is not an agreement, it has been imposed," said Catarina Martins, leader of the Portuguese anti-capitalist party Left Bloc.

"Democracy has been completely swept aside to make way for the colonial-style impositions."

Nobel-winning economist Paul Krugman quoted the Twitter hashtag #ThisIsACoup in a blog in the New York Times.

"This goes beyond harsh into pure vindictiveness, complete destruction of national sovereignty, and no hope of relief," he wrote.

"It's a grotesque betrayal of everything the European project was supposed to stand for."

Greeks 'enslaved' 

Story continues below…

Eurosceptic parties in several countries also decried the way Greece had been treated.

"If I were a Greek politician I would vote against this deal. If I were a Greek 'no' voter I would be protesting in the streets," said Nigel Farage, leader of Britain's anti-EU party UKIP.

"Mr Tsipras's position is now at stake. This conditional deal shows that national democracy and membership of the eurozone are incompatible."

Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron has promised a national referendum by the end of 2017 on whether to leave the European Union.

The leader of Italian right-wing anti-euro Northern League, Matteo Salvini, called the deal a "farce" for handing Greece more money but not reforming the EU treaties.

The French National Front's vice-president Florian Philippot called it "the enslaving of an entire people" to "save the euro at any price".

"If the agreement goes ahead, Greece will emerge washed out, even dead."

For more news from Spain, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local/AFP (news@thelocal.es)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Recipe: How to make fabada - traditional Asturian bean stew
Photo: Flavio Lorenzo Sánchez/Flickr

The hearty Asturian dish is a perfect lunch on a cold day... and don't forget the crusty bread and cider!

Brit 'paedo' held on Costa del Sol after Most Wanted appeal

One of Britain's most wanted fugitives was arrested on the Costa Del Sol following a tip-off from an expat just hours after his face appeared on a public appeal.

Spain's parliament approves deficit reduction measures
Photo: Images Money/Flickr

Spanish lawmakers approved on Thursday measures to reduce the public deficit and keep it under the target agreed with the European Union.

'Cubism and War' show opens at Barcelona Picasso Museum
Pablo Picasso Harlequin and Woman with a Necklace. Photo: MP

Barcelona's Picasso Museum unveiled an exhibition on "Cubism and War" on Thursday depicting how one of the most influential artistic styles of the 20th century survived the First World War.

Why this bionic limb pioneer doesn't believe in disability
Hugh Herr has been award Spain's top science prize. Photo: FPA

The Local speaks to Hugh Herr on winning Spain's top science prize and how being an amputee doesn't make him disabled.

Dine in the buff at Spain's first nudist restaurant
A buffet of organic food will be served on "human tables". Photo: Innato / Facebook

Spain's first naked dining experience is to arrive on the island of Tenerife following the success of a similar venture in London.

Spain's top court overturns bullfighting ban in Catalonia
Photo: AFP

Spain's Constitutional Court on Thursday cancelled a bullfighting ban in Catalonia in what is likely to exacerbate tensions between Madrid and the separatist region, and between animal activists and fans of the tradition.

Out of the dark: Five years on from Eta ceasefire
Eta members made a ceasefire declaration in January, 2011. Photo: Gara / AFP

Five years after armed separatist group Eta declared a permanent ceasefire, Basque journalist Alberto Letona is still wondering when the dialogue will begin.

Hunt for ten most wanted Brit fugitives hiding out in Spain
Call Crimestoppers if you recognize these faces.

These fugitives from British justice are thought to be hiding out in Spain. Do you recognize anyone?

Eta 'not dead' but Spain focus moves onto jihadism
Archive photo of a pro-mural in the Basque Country. Photo: AFP

Five years after Eta quit violence, the Basque separatist group has yet to dissolve but it poses little threat and authorities have shifted their focus to fight jihadists, says Spain's chief anti-terrorism prosecutor.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Madrid parish church faces fine over 'too noisy' bells
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Celebrate expat life at Madrid’s THRIVE convention
Fury after kids told to bring their own loo roll to school
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Disney announces plans for Don Quixote action movie
Activist tells 8-yr-old matador wannabe with cancer 'just die'
King to make last minute push to avoid third vote in Spain
Amazing photos of Catalonia's 'human tower' contest
What's on in Spain: October 2016
'No way, Jose! You'll never get your hands on our Rock'
Recipe: How to make a classic Spanish tortilla de patatas
Chorizo in paella? Go back to cooking school Jamie Oliver
Spain in eye of a perfect storm after 10 months without govt
Thousands share clips of life for 'Spain in a Day' film
Ten incredible Spain locations for Game of Thrones season 7
Analysis & Opinion
Why moving to Spain could be the best decision of your life
Seven reasons why autumn is the very best season in Spain
Spanish study finds four types of personality. Which are you?
New search underway for civil war grave of poet Lorca
Bison found decapitated on Valencia nature reserve
Forgotten Voices: What Brits in Spain think about Brexit
One dead and 14 injured in blast at Spanish resort
Game of Thrones want extras 'with muscles' to film in Spain
Thousands march in Madrid to push for bullfighting ban
jobs available