Greece to survive regardless of creditors' decisions: PM

Greece to survive regardless of creditors
# 28 June 2015 03:19 (UTC +04:00)

The Greek Leftist leader appeared determined to go ahead "in any case" with the referendum he called on early Saturday for July 5 over the debt deal proposed by lenders, according to his close aides.

Tsipras' message was sent as a Eurogroup meeting in Brussels was ending with a rejection of his request for an extension to the current bailout for a few days beyond June 30 to allow Greek citizens to decide whether to approve the harsh draft deal or not.

Euro zone finance ministers made clear on Saturday in an official statement issued after their talks that the Greek bailout program and subsequently any financial support toGreece ends on June 30 as agreed in February.

Eurogroup chief Jeroen Dijsselbloem said that the referendum call was perceived as a negative surprise and a unilateral break off the five month negotiations on the terms of a deal.

As the Eurogroup was now examining all options to "ensure the stability of euro zone," Greece faced an increased danger of an imminent bankruptcy and possible Grexit in coming weeks.

With no bailout program beyond June 30, Athens could be cut off the emergency liquidity assistance mechanism of the European Central Bank (ECB) which was due to take its own decisions on Sunday, according to the latest information from the Greek side.

Should the ECB stops providing emergency liquidity funding to the Greek banking system, capital controls in the first stage and eventually a default become increasingly likely, analysts noted.

With no more international aid Athens would struggle to repay a loan installment to International Monetary Fund on June 30, pensions and wages of civil servants next week and its next financial obligations in coming weeks.

Greeks will head to the ballot under very difficult circumstances.

After the Eurogroup meeting in Brussels on Saturday Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis said that Greece was still seeking an honest viable compromise reforms for cash agreement and the government would urge citizens to approve an improved draft if the creditors would table it by next Tuesday.

Until then the Leftist government urges Greeks to vote down the draft deal the lenders submitted on Thursday as "humiliating" for Greek people.

Cabinet ministers who addressed the Greek parliament throughout Saturday during an emergency debate which was still underway called on Greek voters to vote for their dignity.

Lawmakers were due to vote at midnight to ratify the government's call for the referendum.

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