EU Pushes Tsipras On Reforms

Leftwing leader Alexis Tsipras signs official documents after being sworn in as prime minister at a ceremony attended by President Prokopis Pavlopoulos in Athens on Monday, Sept. 21, 2015. Tsipras, who won a convincing general election victory on Sunday, took a secural oath of office. (AP Photo/Thanassis Stavrakis)

ATHENS – Less than a day after he won election, Greek Premier Alexis Tsipras was already being pushed by international lenders to stick to reforms he agreed to in his previous administration.

The European Commission reminded him that he has “no time to lose,” in meeting the terms of a third bailout of 86 billion euros ($96.28 billion) he signed after saying he would never seek it because it comes with more harsh austerity as well.

“The commission congratulates Alexis Tsipras for his victory,” European Commission spokesman Margaritis Schinas, a Greek, told reporters.

He noted that under Tsipras’s previous seven-month tenure, Greece “committed to ambitious program of reforms” to revive the country’s economy.

“The new government will now have the mandate to carry out those reforms… There is a lot of work ahead,” Schinas added, Agence France Presse reported.

Schinas said Greece’s creditors – the Quartet of the European Union-International Monetary Fund-European Central Bank-European Stability Mechanism (EU-IMF-ECB-ESM) were expected to meet over the next few months to conduct a review aimed at releasing new funds under the bailout deal.

Tsipras resigned on Aug. 20 and called the Sept. 20 elections in what turned into a successful bid to rid his party of anti-austerity rebels who said he betrayed them and Greeks by capitulating to the lendes.

 

Tsipras was expected to see European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker in Brussels Sept. 23 for an EU summit on the refugee crisis, which is hitting Greece particularly hard.