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06 March, 2016

A new start for the Committee on the Greek Public Debt


Thirteen MEPs of the Left and the Greens signed in Brussels a support text for the continuation of the Truth Committee's work on the Greek Public Debt, which was set up last year by the former Speaker of the Hellenic Parliament, Zoe Konstantopoulou.

The signing of the text was made on the occasion of the manifestation of the European Left Group (GUE / NLG) in the European Parliament, attended by more than 120 people, in which the hitherto work of the Committee was presented. As characteristically been said by the coordinator of the Truth Committee's work, Éric Toussaint, who was speaker at one of the two panels of the conference: "I have rarely seen this room so crowded."

In the support text it is noted that “recognizing its valuable contribution and confirming that the audit of public debt serve a fundamental sovereign right of peoples, which should be followed and respected by all governments and authorities-institutions, we support the continuation of work of the Greek Public Debt Truth Committee.”

On Tuesday (01/03) at a press conference in Brussels after the meeting "Restructuring of Debt - Rebuilding Democracy" organized by the European Left Group (GUE / NLG), on the initiative of the MEPs Sofia Sakorafa, Nikos Chountis and Jean-Luc Mélenchon, the Truth Committee announced the continuation of its work, in spite of "sabotage" by the current Speaker of the Hellenic Parliament, Nikos Voutsis, and by the leadership of SYRIZA.

It has also announced its transformation into a Union, which will soon open the General Assembly convergence with the participation of all those who are interested on the initiative's continuing effort to audit the Greek public debt, in addition to those who have already supported, in any way, the work, during the term of office of Mrs. Konstantopoulou as Speaker of the Hellenic Parliament.

At a press conference by Sofia Sakorafa, Zoe Konstantopoulou and scientific coordinator of the Committee's work, Éric Toussaint, it has been stressed that the members of the Committee, considering the regime of prosecution and the undermining-extinction of the Committee's work by the current Speaker of the Hellenic Parliament and the current Greek government authorities, decided to remain faithful to their duty towards the Greek people, that is, not to succumb to a violent termination of Committee's work, but to continue it by any means.

The operation of domestic [Greek] banks and the ECB will be examined in the next work of the Truth Committee, while the next meeting has been scheduled for the early summer in Athens.

The Truth Committee will investigate how the Greek banking sector has been transformed since the mid 90's prior to the Greek accession to the EMU [European Monetary Union]. How with the vehicle of cutting interest rates after the accession of Greece to the euro, the banks led the Greek households to indebtedness and the creation of a financial bubble. How the collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2008 exacerbated the banking crisis in Greece and how the recent recapitalization of banks, has benefited scandalously the acquisition of bank shares by private investors (funds) while blocked Greek investors because of the power of capital controls.

The findings of the Truth Committee for Public Debt regarding the Greek banking system, is expected to be ready for publication in mid-May to early June. Subsequently it will be published, on the occasion of one year of the publication of preliminary findings on Greek public debt in June 2015.

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