Varoufakis launches new political party

Varoufakis launches new political party

Yanis Varoufakis, Greece’s former finance minister who transfixed Europe with his unconventional style at the climax of the debt crisis, launched a new party on Monday promising to free his country from debt bondage.

The academic economist – who once described the austerity imposed by Greece’s creditors as “fiscal waterboarding” – said his new MeRA25 party would revive the economy through debt restructuring and other measures.

Varoufakis’s regular criticism of eurozone policy and his anti-austerity stance angered Greece’s creditors and brought the country to the brink of a euro exit in 2015 before he resigned.

He won a measure of celebrity through his combative stance, though there have been no recent polls to test whether that will be enough to take his party past the 3-percent threshold to enter parliament.

Greece was living as a “debtors’ colony,” which would eventually lead to its “desertification,” Varoufakis told reporters at a central Athens theatre, his black shirt still untucked.

He said the debt-strapped country had suffered a quadruple bankruptcy – a bankrupt state with bankrupt banks and households and nonviable businesses “where everyone owes to everybody else but no one can pay.”

“Our young people learned to live on 400 euros a month or look to emigrate. We will not repatriate them with debt relief alone as [the creditors] are promising us,” he said. “Once your human capital has left, you are bereft.”


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