‘Greece is no longer a sovereign state’

As Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou abandons plans to hold a referendum on the bailout program granted to Athens by Germany and France, analysts say Greece is now so deep in the debt pool that now it is ruled by creditors.

­“Greece is no longer an independent country,” says Demetri Kofinas, an RT contributor. “In recent months, all the talk in the Greek Parliament has been ‘What we are going to do satisfy our creditors’ demands?’ Athens’ creditors – European banks and the ECB – will determine whether Greece survives or not, so the Greek authorities are not even hiding the fact that they are in no control of their own destiny.”

Rome fears the EU banks will stop providing liquidity to the Greek banking system, which has been bleeding deposits for months, remarks Kofinas. The real concern is that the Greek banking system is no longer sustainable because it holds so much of Greek sovereign debt.

Overall, there was no support for the proposed bailout referendum – neither in Europe, nor in Greece, points out the analyst.

The Greek PM has received pressure from all sides: from Chancellor Merkel, from President Sarkozy, from the leaders in Europe – but also from the members of his own party. He was reprimanded across the board. The referendum that he proposed was quickly shut down by everyone,” says Kofinas.

But even if the referendum had been held, it is hard to imagine a ‘yes’ vote, he adds. Such public questions tend to provoke an answer not to the matter in hand, but to the interrogator. The annoyance with the political vacuum clearly demonstrated during the national strikes in Greece would be likely to result in a negative reaction to whatever PM Papandreou had to push through a referendum, believes Kofinas.