Opposition parties react to leftist MP’s Grexit comments

31 January 2017
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Opposition parties on Tuesday slammed the SYRIZA-Independent Greeks coalition government after a leftist lawmaker said a discussion on a Greek exit from the euro should not be considered “taboo.”

Speaking on Skai TV earlier in the day, SYRIZA MP Nikos Xydakis said that Parliament should be open to a discussion on Greece’s prospects outside the eurozone.

“There should be no taboos when we’re talking about the nation’s fate. We should be building scenarios, examining history,” Xydakis said. “We have reached a point where the populace has run out of physical tolerance. I believe we need an in-depth political and national discussion that has not taken place in seven years and, of course, this discussions needs to start in Parliament.”

Xydakis has made similar comments in the past, but his most recent suggestion that Greece may be better off returning to its national currency comes at a particularly sensitive point in negotiations with the country’s foreign creditors, prompting a rapid response from opposition parties.

“Gradually, one by one, the government’s own officials are confessing its true intentions and what is really going on,” the spokesman for the main opposition New Democracy party, Vassilis Kikilias, said.

Independent lawmaker Haris Theocharis dismissed Xydakis’s comments as being “ridiculous” and called on Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to make his position on the subject clear.

“Does Mr. Xydakis have a plan for the transition to the drachma, or are we supposed to get by with raids on the mint every so often,” Theocharis said.

The Union of Centrists was also critical of Xydakis’s comments, calling on the government to present a unified line in negotiations, otherwise the “specter of Grexit will reappear.”

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