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Greece debt crisis: Tsipras appeals for European unity

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has called for the European Union to avoid division, as indebted Greece struggles to stay in the euro.

In a sometimes stormy debate in the European Parliament, he said: “Let’s not let Europe be divided”.

Greece must present new proposals by the end of Thursday to reach a deal with creditors, before a full European Union summit on Sunday.

Mr Tsipras said proposals were being worked on but failed to give details.

The Greek prime minister said he was “confident” that his government could meet “its obligations in the interests of Greece and the eurozone” over the next few days.

He was greeted by both boos and cheers as he entered the chamber, where he criticised previous bailouts for turning Greece into an “austerity laboratory”.

“However, this experiment, I think all of us have to accept, has not been a success,” he told the parliament in Strasbourg.

Mr Tsipras was speaking only days after the Greek people decisively rejected the latest proposals from creditors in a referendum.

The Greek people “stood up and were counted – we have to listen to what they said.”

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But in a sign of divisions in the European Parliament over the Greek debt crisis, some MEPs displayed placards saying “No”, praising the result of the Greek referendum.

In contrast, German MEP Manfred Weber criticised the failure of Greece to submit detailed proposals and accused Mr Tsipras of insulting other European leaders.

“The extremists of Europe are applauding you,” he said, referring to support from both left and right in parliament.


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