ATHENS — Main opposition SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras emphasised that Greece needs to immediately return "to an active foreign policy and its role as a pillar of peace and stability in the region," in statements concluding a meeting of the party's Central Committee for Restructuring.
Wrapping up the meeting on Saturday, Tsipras also spoke of uncertainty surrounding what Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and his government will choose to do in terms of tackling the economic crisis. He said this would depend on the decisions made on a European level regarding the recovery fund and whether disbursements would be made in the second half of 2021, or whether they would be conditional on reforms promoting austerity and recessionary policies.
"It is crucial whether the escape clause will apply in 2021. If not, we will soon be faced with new measures, austerity measures, that will trigger a recessionary cycle. I don't know whether the Mitsotakis government will opt to conceal this from the Greek people or speak frankly. Whether it will choose to escape or press on. We will find out in August," he said.
He said SYRIZA must continue efforts on an international level for a strong recovery fund without new loans and austerity programmes, as well as a fair and organised European and Greek migration policy: "The disastrous logic adopted by Mr. Mitsotakis that Greece is the shield of Europe allows Europe to duck its responsibilities and makes the country a warehouse of souls and transgressor of international law," he added.
Tsipras was highly critical of the prime minister's handling of relations with Turkey, accusing him of a series of mistakes and repeating a call for the extension of Greek territorial waters in the Ionian and for a meeting of the political party leaders' council.