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8 Sep, 2011 16:17

Greece rules out leaving angry eurozone

Greek officials say they have no plans to quit the single currency. Instead, Athens pledges to find means to qualify for the second rescue package of 109 billion euro bailout agreed by eurozone leaders in July.

"There is no threat of Greece exiting the euro zone," government spokesman Ilias Mosialos said as cited by Reuters. "We are proceeding with reforms quickly."Nevertheless, Greece has so far not hit fiscal and reform targets set by the EU even before the first bailout was passed on to the country in 2010. The eurozone is getting increasingly irritated over Greece failing to meet fiscal targets set as conditions for the second bailout as well. Thus, the German finance minister, Wolfgang Schauble, has threatened to leave the Greek struggling economy to the mercy of financial markets, if Athens does not follow the Bloc’s demands. Schauble’s threat, announced during his interview to Deutschlandfunk radio, follows revelations of the scope of Greece's recession. The country has lost another 7 percent of its GDP this year. These fiscal results are seen as a result of the severe austerity measures that came attached with two EU sponsored bailouts. Critics have condemned the harshness of the Bloc’s demands saying recovery is impossible under such stress.Greek MP Simos Kedikoglou says the EU’s measures are destroying the agriculture in Greece.“With the ‘help’ of the European Union, Greek farmers have stopped producing. Can you imagine a country like Greece right now cannot feed its own people? We don’t produce enough meet, we don’t produce enough wheat, we don’t produce enough oil. We are importing!” the MP told Russia Today.“We have a scheme from the EU that farmers were paid so that they would not produce anything. We destroyed the main assets of our economy. This has to change,” he added. Simos Kedikoglou is disgusted that EU lenders benefit on Greece’s plights. “Germany is lending money to us with a bigger interest rate than it is borrowing. They are making money out of help to us,” he said.