Greece Will Not be 'Blackmailed' into More Austerity, Tsipras Declares

Speaking before a session of the new Syriza parliament in Athens on Tuesday, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras declared that Greek negotiators will not succumb to “blackmail” from European lenders and will adhere to their promise to end austerity policies in the state.

“We are not in a hurry and we will not compromise,” Tsipras told the assembled lawmakers. “We are working hard for an honest and mutually beneficial deal, a deal without austerity, without the bailout which has destroyed Greece in recent years, a deal without the toxic presence of the Troika.”

Tsipras made the comments as tense negotiations with other European financial ministers and lenders representing the Troika lenders—which include the European Central Bank (ECB), the European Commission, and the International Monetary Fund—continued in Brussels.

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On Monday, those talks collapsed after finance minister Yanis Varoufakis rejected a proposal put forth by the Eurogroup ministers because it called for an extension of the current bailout scheme with no alterations to the terms. Greek leaders face a Friday deadline by which they must agree on a short term aid package.

The Guardian, quoting sources close to the Greek finance ministry, said that it was “highly probable” that on Wednesday Greece would submit a request for a temporary loan agreement, which they say would exclude the austerity conditions set in the existing bailout.

The Guardian reports: