European leaders : no hesitation, choose democracy !

Dear European leaders,

Our letter is a letter of hope. The hope democratically elected leaders of the European Union will stand for our generation. The hope you will make the right choice and side with the Greek people facing a huge denial of their democratic rights.

It’s Tuesday and Greek banks are closed. The negotiations with the EU were suspended abruptly and a referendum is scheduled to happen soon in Greece. Uncertainty seems to be the key word until the referendum, on July 5th. What has led us up to this point?

It has already been six long years since austerity arrived in Europe, following the biggest economic crisis in Europe after the Great Depression. Ever since that time, we have watched the kind of events we were no longer expecting to occur in Europe : in Italy, a non-elected government was put into power, giving no possibility to the Italian people to decide; in Greece, a democratic government was forced to resign after several European threats against the proposition of holding a national referendum on the acceptance of the terms of a Eurozone bailout deal. In the meantime, countries under financial assistance were forced to apply the blind austerity cuts and neoliberal reforms imposed by the troika. They have fallen under economic distress without seeing any improvement on their situation. On the contrary, unemployment rates have reached skyrocketing levels, the number of people living under the poverty line has boomed. Child mortality has risen in Greece, the AIDS epidemic has started to rise again and hundreds of thousands of young people have had to leave their country to find a job. All of this happened while public debt has continued to increase and   deficit reduction has been so narrow it is barely noticeable

But most importantly, the unfair and undemocratic policies pushed by the troika have given the opportunity to far right movements to gain more popularity, more votes, more MEPs and more governments. They have started winning the hearts of young people who cannot see a future in Europe anymore and look for some kind of alternative.

As Paul Krugman recently said, “the troika (…) made Tsipras an offer he can’t accept, and presumably did this knowingly.” This means that the EU and the Troikaare telling the European people that the only alternative they have iare policies make them unemployed, poorer and to endanger their health.

As Young European Socialists we vehemently oppose that the European leaders continue to force upon one of its member state a deal its government obviously cannot accept.

We urge you to make all necessary efforts in order to keep Greece inside its natural political space by respecting the democratic legitimacy of its government. We believe it is necessary to understand the request of the Greek government to consider partial debt relief, as the reimbursement of the Greek debt, mostly built following austerity policies, is now making any recovery impossible.

Politics in Europe has to be focused on people, not on numbers. We call on political leaders who continuously claimthat they are attached to European values to act upon them and clearly choose democracy. In this situation one cannot “wait and see” or “stand in the middle”: it is your duty as democratically elected leaders of the EU to stand with the people of Europe.

As Young European Socialists we want to tell you the choice you will have will define whether the relationship our generation will have with the European project in the next years will be one of rejection or   a sense belonging.

Joseph Stiglitz recently said “that concern for popular legitimacy [the referendum called by the Greek Government] is incompatible with the politics of the Eurozone, which was never a very democratic project.” May you be the generation of leaders who will give Europe democratic legitimacy by implementing true solidarity among its member states and people.


The Young European Socialists


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