Lunedi, 18 Giugno, 2018

EU finance ministers to consider withholding Greece aid

Remigio Civitarese | 13 Settembre, 2016, 05:54

The first Mediterranean EU Countries Summit brought together Greek officials, French President François Hollande, Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat, Portuguese Prime Minister António Costa, Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades and a senior government official from Spain.

Economic stagnation, the rise of euroscepticism and a strengthening of the far-right were issues which needed to be addressed, Tsipras told the EurActiv news website in an interview.

Greece has rejected the reactivation of the so-called Dublin Regulation, which allows other European Union member states to send refugees back to the country, a government spokesman said.

"Visegrad countries can not be allowed to dominate the debate on Europe's future", Tsipras said in an interview with French daily Le Monde.

Ahead of the forthcoming informal European Council meeting scheduled for September 16 in Bratislava on Europe's future, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras hosted the EU-Mediterranean summit in a first bid to reach common positions to tackle the economic crisis, the refugee-migrant flows, security issues, and other key problems the EU faces as a whole.

The 27 European Union leaders - the entire bloc, except Britain - will gather on September 16 to discuss the fallout from the British vote in June to quit the EU.

A showdown is expected in Bratislava, with the Visegrad four already holding their own meeting in June to present a united front.

Leaders from France, Italy, Cyprus, Portugal, Malta, and Spain attended the one-day Athens mini- summit to exchange views.

"It's not a secret. that there is a lot to be done to complete these reforms", he said after the ministers discussed Greece's bailout.

The Eurogroup must decide whether Greece has done enough to "meet the milestones agreed in its financial assistance programme", according to the agenda on the European Council website - and some sources say the answer will be "no". Echoing that message, German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said that "there is still time" for Greece to meet its commitments. Weber chairs the European Peoples Party Group in the European parliament. In most cases that was Greece, whose eastern islands were overwhelmed a year ago by migrants packed into smugglers' boats from Turkey.

Even so, Friday's meeting is unlikely to bang the austerity revision drum too loudly to avoid antagonizing Berlin, which has otherwise proven very sympathetic to southern states on migration, Pagoulatos notes.

More than a million refugees and migrants traveled from Turkey to Greece and on to other European Union countries.

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