Mitsotakis briefs opposition leaders Tsipras, Gennimata on developments with coronavirus


Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis held an e-meeting with SYRIZA's main opposition leader Alexis Tsipras on Monday evening, and later with Movement for Change (KINAL) leader Fofi Gennimata, to brief them on the developments concerning the coronavirus outbreak in Greece.

In the first of the PM's meetings using the e-Presence platform, both he and Tsipras stressed the importance of staying at home and restricting movements outside it especially in transportation and in crowding. The daily reminder by state authorities, they said, was one of the most rudimentary of protection measures against the new virus.

On his side, Tsipras put forward his proposals to strengthen the public health system but also to tackle the effects of what he called "the economic epidemic," urging the prime minister not to hesitate to make use of the 35-billion-euro cash buffer that the previous SYRIZA administration handed over to the New Democracy government.

On the economic aspect of the government’s fight against the new virus and sourcing state funds towards it, Tsipras said he called on the premier to pursue a cut in primary surplus targets by 1.5 pct of GDP this year, by around 3 billion euros, set by the country's creditors, and urged that a coronavirus crisis budget "spending of at least 1 pct of GDP, or 2 billion euros, be exempted from the budgetary targets

Tsipras also urged Mitsotakis to "add new ICU beds, and immediately announce the hiring of 4,000 permanent medical and nursing staff."

In Mitsotakis' e-meeting with Gennimata, they both emphasized the importance of staying at home.

The prime minister will continue his e-meetings on Tuesday, with Greek Communist Party General Secretary Dimitris Koutsoubas at 1 p.m. and with Greek Solution leader Kyriakos Velopoulos at 1:30 p.m.

On Wednesday at 11.00 a.m., he will brief MeRA25 General Secretary Yanis Varoufakis.