Greeks feel humiliated by euro zone partners

People in the Greek capital say they feel humiliated by euro zone partners who have not yet accepted their government’s latest proposals to secure a third bailout.

ATHENS, GREECE (JULY 12, 2015) (REUTERS) – People in the Greek capital said on Sunday (July 12) they were angered by euro zone partners who postponed a decision on whether to recommend starting talks on a new loan for Athens.

Sceptical euro zone finance ministers demanded on Saturday (July 11) that Greece go beyond painful austerity measures accepted by Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras if he wants them to open negotiations on a third bailout for his bankrupt country to keep it in the euro.

After the nine-hour session in Brussels adjourned at midnight, Eurogroup chairman Jeroen Dijsselbloem told reporters the talks were very difficult and would resume on Sunday.

He said the group was seeking further commitments first on product market liberalisation, labour laws, privatisation, state reform and more defence cuts, plus a promise to pass key laws next week, officials said.

In Athens, people on the streets were angered by the behaviour of officials in Brussels, with one taking aim at the German finance minister.

“The only thing I care about is not being humiliated by Schaeuble and the rest of them. I don’t care if we go to the drachma or whatever, we support the prime minister whatever decision he makes. But now I feel a little bad, not with the prime minister but with Germany’s stance. This misanthrope Schaeuble, I don’t know what he’s trying to achieve,” said private sector worker Panagiotis Trikokglou, referring to German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble who put forward a paper demanding stronger Greek measures or a five-year “time-out” from the euro zone that looked like a disguised expulsion.

“It’s obvious there is a lack of democracy and we are not dealing with partners but with people who care only about profit and who are uninterested in people. Of course they are intransigent, they are awful and they are also to blame for the situation that the country is now in,” Greek private sector worker Zoe told Reuters TV.

“Recently he’s been offering “everything”. He’s crossed all those so-called red lines. He wants us to exit this crisis even if we are the victims, for years now,” said Tassos Kardassas referring to Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras.

“There is a lack of trust. Certainly it’s not good and especially because behind all of this there is a nation… but what can I say? I really hope everything goes well and that they look at us as human beings,” said Nikos Filippidis.

A full emergency meeting of EU heads of state and government due to start Sunday in Brussels was cancelled as talks among euro zone leaders were set to restart.

The Eurogroup session resumes on Sunday morning in Brussels.