ATHENS – Continuing a pattern of contradictions, some 70 percent of Greeks don’t trust the European Union they were eager to join at the same time a majority had said they didn’t want their country to leave or be pushed out of the Eurozone of countries using the euro.
And 79 percent said they don’t think their voice is being heard in the EU, at odds with most other countries who feel satisfied, led by the Danes at 73 percent, Swedes at 71 percent and Germans at 70 percent, as the United Kingdom is set to leave the Eurozone.
But trust is another issue, with the average being only 42 percent, still its highest level since late in 2010, the survey showed, with the highest rates in Lithuania, 65 percent; Denmark, 60 percent; and Sweden, 59 percent while 43 percent of Europeans have a positive image of the EU – the highest level since autumn 2009.
Greece came close to a Eurozone exit in the summer of 2015 before Prime Minister and Radical Left SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras reneged on an anti-austerity referendum he called asking Greeks to join him in defying the country’s European creditors.
They gave him what he wanted but he promptly did an about-face and took the austerity as part of a package to get a third bailout, this one for 86 billion euros ($98.1 billion) he said he wouldn’t seek or accept but did both.