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Tsipras Brings Up Cutting the Debt at Riga

May 22, 2015 (EIRNS)—Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras’ talks last night with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande on the sidelines of the European Council meeting in Latvia, at first generated optimistic statements. As usual, by mid-morning today, Merkel had issued a statement pouring cold water even on these statements, saying that it was clear that "further work has to be done with the three institutions." This allusion to the T-word (Troika) was most likely a not-so-subtle dig at Tsipras.

The real issue though was clearly the necessity for, and refusal by the European Commission, the European Central Bank, and the International Monetary Fund (the Troika) to cut the unsustainable debt. In fact, the popular Greek website, DefenceNet reports that Tsipras brought up the question of a debt cut, which the Western media are not reporting. This is implicit in Greece’s ultimatum that, as of June 5, it will not have the money to pay the $300 million to the IMF unless there is an agreement, since Greece does not want more bail-out loans, but a debt cut.

Tsipras met European Commission President and resident clown, Jean-Claude Juncker, who did nothing except try to force his neck tie on Tsipras.

City of London mouthpiece Ambrose Evans-Pritchard writes in the Daily Telegraph yesterday that the Greek government is very likely to carry through with its ultimatum which he said was made clear at the government’s "war cabinet" 10 days ago, when "all wings of the party agreed that they would stand and fight—whatever the consequences—rather than submit to demands for a further cut in wages and pensions, or accept any deal that fails to offer debt relief and imposes a primary surplus above 1% of GDP."

Despite Evans-Pritchard’s claim that the Europeans are "wobbling," there do not appear to be any signs of this.

Greece’s ruling Syriza Party will hold its Central Committee meeting over the May 23-24 weekend where the party’s hardliners will declare the refusal to accept a deal that compromises their election pledges. Speaking in Parliament today, Reconstruction and Energy Minister Panagiotis Lafazanis, who leads the party’s Left Platform and is a big supporter of Greece’s working with the BRICS, declared that the government could not endorse anything that would put its pre-election program into the freezer, according to Greek website enikos.gr.