News / USA

US Offers Full US Support for Greek Economic Recovery Plan

Greek Foreign Minister Stavros Lambrinidis , left, and US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton speak on Sunday July 17, 2011 during a meeting at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Athens
Greek Foreign Minister Stavros Lambrinidis , left, and US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton speak on Sunday July 17, 2011 during a meeting at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Athens

Multimedia

Audio

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says the United States “unequivocally” supports the economic recovery plan of Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou. Clinton held talks with top Greek officials in Athens in advance of a critical European meeting Thursday on a second financial bailout for Greece.

The United States will have no role in the bailout decision, to be made by the 17 key “Eurozone” countries of the European Union.

But Clinton delivered a strong message of political backing, saying she was pleased to be in Athens in what she termed “challenging times” to demonstrate the United States’ “unequivocally strong support” for NATO ally Greece.

The Secretary of State said the Papandreou government’s new round of austerity measures and tax hikes are strong medicine and difficult therapy for Greek citizens, but said the United States has every confidence of an eventual economic rebound.

“I have faith in the resilience of the Greek people. And I applaud the Greek government on its willingness to take these difficult steps. Greece has inspired the world before and I have every confidence that you are doing so again. And as you do what you must to bring your economy back to health, you will have the full support of the United States,” said the US top diplomat.

Clinton spoke at a press event with Greek Foreign Minister Stavros Lambrinidis, newly installed after the recent Greek Cabinet shakeup.

Speaking through an interpreter, he said that while many on both sides of the Atlantic have “bet on the collapse of Greece” the Papandreou government will prove them wrong.

“Despite the doomsayers, we are proceeding and we shall come out of this victorious. Of course we have no magic solutions. But there is no question the sacrifices that the Greek people have made have not only done away with the very real past risk of default, but will create a sound basis for recovery.”

The Greek foreign minister said his country needs not only U.S. but European solidarity, a message he said was lost on some E.U. member states in recent months.

A senior U.S. official said while not diminishing the severity of Greece’s problems, that country represents only about three percent of the E.U. economy, and the Greek problem is not of a magnitude the European Union cannot deal with.

Clinton’s talks here also focused on the Middle East political turmoil, Balkan stability, Greek-Turkish relations, and Cyprus.

Clinton said Saturday the United States would like to see a Cyprus settlement before the island state is to assume the E.U. presidency for the first time next year.

The Greek foreign minister said he thinks progress is possible, but that it mainly requires political will on the part of the Turkish government.

Cyprus has been divided along ethnic lines since 1974 when Turkish troops occupied the northern third of the island in response to a coup in Nicosia aimed at a union with Greece.

The senior U.S. official said he is encouraged by the fact that Greek and Turkish Cypriot leaders have held more than 80 face-to-face meetings during the past two years. He said they are “close” to an agreement, but that being close is not sufficient.

You May Like

Turbulent Transition Imperils Tunisia’s Arab Spring Gains

Critics say new anti-terrorism laws worsen Tunisia's situation while others put faith in country’s vibrant civil organizations, women’s movement More

Burundi’s Political Crisis May Become Humanitarian One

United Nations aid agencies issue warning as deadly violence sends tens of thousands fleeing More

Yemenis Adjust to Life Under Houthi Rule

Locals want warring parties to strike deal to stop bloodletting before deciding how country is governed More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Texas Town Residents Told to 'Just Leave' Ahead of Flood Threati
X
Greg Flakus
May 29, 2015 11:24 PM
Water from heavy rain in eastern and central Texas is now swelling rivers that flow into the Gulf of Mexico, threatening towns along their banks. VOA’s Greg Flakus visited the town of Wharton, southwest of Houston, where the Colorado River is close to cresting.
Video

Video Texas Town Residents Told to 'Just Leave' Ahead of Flood Threat

Water from heavy rain in eastern and central Texas is now swelling rivers that flow into the Gulf of Mexico, threatening towns along their banks. VOA’s Greg Flakus visited the town of Wharton, southwest of Houston, where the Colorado River is close to cresting.
Video

Video New York's One World Trade Center Observatory Opens to Public

From New Jersey to Long Island, from Northern suburbs to the Atlantic Ocean, with all of New York City in-between.  That view became available to the public Friday as the One World Trade Center Observatory opened in New York -- atop the replacement for the buildings destroyed in the September 11, 2001, attacks.  VOA’s Bernard Shusman reports.
Video

Video Seoul Sponsors Korean Unification Fair

With inter-Korean relations deteriorating over the North’s nuclear program, past military provocations and human rights abuses, many Koreans still hold out hope for eventual peaceful re-unification. VOA’s Brian Padden visited a “unification fair” held this week in Seoul, where border communities promoted the benefits of increased cooperation.
Video

Video Purple Door Coffeeshop: Changing Lives One Cup at a Time

For a quarter of his life, Kevin Persons lived on the street. Today, he is working behind the counter of an espresso bar, serving coffee and working to transition off the streets and into a home. Paul Vargas reports for VOA.
Video

Video Modular Robot Getting Closer to Reality

A robot being developed at Carnegie Mellon University has evolved into a multi-legged modular mechanical snake, able to move over rugged surfaces and explore the surroundings. Scientists say such machines could someday help in search and rescue operations. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Shanghai Hosts Big Consumer Electronics Show

Electronic gadgets are a huge success in China, judging by the first Asian Consumer Electronics Show, held this week in Shanghai. Over the course of two days, more than 20,000 visitors watched, tested and played with useful and some less-useful electronic devices exhibited by about 200 manufacturers. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Forced to Return Home, Afghan Refugees Face Increased Hardship

Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Britain Makes Controversial Move to Crack Down on Extremism

Britain is moving to tighten controls on extremist rhetoric, even when it does not incite violence or hatred -- a move that some are concerned might unduly restrict basic freedoms. It is an issue many countries are grappling with as extremist groups gain power in the Middle East, fueled in part by donations and fighters from the West. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video 3D Printer Makes Replica of Iconic Sports Car

Cars with parts made by 3D printers are already on the road, but engineers are still learning about this new technology. While testing the possibility of printing an entire car, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy recently created an electric-powered replica of an iconic sports roadster. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Al-Shabab Recruitment Drive Still on In Kenya

The al-Shabab militants that have long battled for control of Somalia also have recruited thousands of young people in Kenya, leaving many families disconsolate. Mohammed Yusuf recently visited the Kenyan town of Isiolo, and met with relatives of those recruited, as well as a many who have helped with the recruiting.
Video

Video A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensions

When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.

VOA Blogs