Tsipras urges ministers to focus on reforms to secure debt relief talks

Tsipras urges ministers to focus on reforms to secure debt relief talks

In a televised address to his new cabinet on Friday, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras stressed the importance of securing a positive review over the next few weeks so talks on debt relief can get underway and urged his ministers to stop television appearances and focus on the task at hand. 

"Debt reduction will cut investment risks and make our economy attractive to investors again," Tsipras told ministers in the first meeting of the country's cabinet since leftist SYRIZA won general elections last Sunday.

Another priority is the country's cash-strapped banks. "If bank recapitalization is done correctly, it can restore badly needed liquidity to the Greek economy," he said.

Tsipras emphasized that Greece does not have unlimited time "We need to roll up our sleeves and work, to implement our plan with efficiency," he said. "Your positions are not yours, they belong to the Greek people," Tsipras said and called on ministers to stop appearances on television.

Implementing Greece's agreement with creditors is a priority, Tsipras said, maintaining that the country can emerge from the crisis in four years.

Tsipras repeated his pre-election pledge to crack down on corruption and break with "old political system."

On the refugee crisis Tsipras expressed opposition to those in the European Union "who want to change borders into battlefields and seas into watery graves."

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