Maltese Finance Minister Edward Scicluna has likened the pressure that his Cypriot counterpart Michalis Sarris came under during a Eurogroup in Brussels earlier this week, when a tax on depositors in Cyprus was agreed, to having a pistol put to his head.
“It it took nearly 10 long hours before the Cypriot minister’s body and soul became exhausted enough for him to assent to this accord,» wrote Scicluna in an article in The Times of Malta
“As soon as that happened [German Finance Minister Wolfgang] Schauble demanded that all wire transfers to and from the Cypriot banks would cease forthwith.”
Scicluna added that the way Cyprus was treated by some of its partners should serve as a lesson to other small euro member states.
“Cyprus, more than all the others, holds a special place not so much with regard to the unique factors which brought about the financial crisis upon it but as a case study of how an EU micro-Mediterranean island member state is expected to be treated if ever its unfortunate turn would come to seek aid from its fellow member states,» he wrote.
“The feeling one got on exiting the meeting in the early hours of the day was that never in one’s life would one like to dream the experience let alone live it.”