When Syriza’s Alexis Tsipras stood as candidate of the Party of the European Left (EL) for the post of the President of the European Commission in the 2014 election campaign to the European Parliament, he always appealed for an alliance of Mediterranean EU member states against austerity. With Syriza becoming the strongest party in the 2015 Greek election and forming a coalition government, the EL claimed that ‘Greece could be the spark for defeating austerity in Europe’. Yanis Varoufakis toured the capitals of the Mediterranean EU countries to raise support for an ‘honourable compromise’ with the troika (IMF, ECB, EU Commission) and the Euro-zone Council, but such an alliance did not materialize at the time. The rest of the story is well known, the Greek government capitulated, signed the Third Memorandum with the troika and implemented it.
However, after the Brexit-vote in the UK, Tsipras managed to bring together the heads of state and government of Cyprus (Nicos Anastasiades, conservative), France (Francois Hollande, Socialist), Italy (Matteo Renzi, Democrat), Portugal (Antonio Costa, Socialist), Malta (Joseph Muscat, Labour) and Spain’s State Secretary for the European Union, Fernando Eguidazu (conservative) on 7 – 9 September 2016 in Athens to the first Mediterranean EU Countries´ Summit (EU Med). [Read more…]