Government sources: President Obama’s visit is an event of immense importance for Greece

U.S. President Barack Obama’s visit to Greece on November 15-16 is an event of immense importance for Greece and for Europe, government sources noted on Thursday. The sources criticised what they called a stance of “blind opposition” adopted by New Democracy in seeking to downplay the importance of a visit that gave active support to Greece and had global reach.

The United States and especially Barack Obama have adopted a stance supportive of Greek positions on a series of crucial issues, the sources pointed out, including on debt relief for Greece that was crucial for its transition to a period of growth and prosperity. Regarding the Cyprus issue, also, for the first time in years the groundwork had been laid for the various sides to agree on a substantive, truly just and viable solution, they pointed out, while also highlighting the visit’s significance for Greece’s foreign policy agenda and its goals to promote peace and stability in the region.

President Obama’s keynote speech from the hill overlooking the Acropolis had historic significance, the government sources pointed out, given that the leader of the U.S. “is selecting the place where democracy was born to deliver his last public speech to an international audience before handing the baton to the new president Trump.”
“A speech that will underline the legacy of the defence of progressive values on a global scale and will be a universal message in support of the universal human values of democracy, social justice, and respect for human rights. At the same time, it will highlight the principled stance, based on humanism and solidarity, shown by the government and the Greek people toward refugees and migrants,” the sources said.

“However much some people might like to downplay, if possible, the significance of the U.S. President’s visit, the reality is that this visit gives active support for Greece and is at the same time an event of global reach,” they said.

“Unfortunately, the main opposition chooses to adopt such an attitude. It would be pettiness if it were not, in reality, another incidence of blind opposition that invests only in chaos and disaster. ND does not want the failure of the government but of the country. It wants to provoke destabilisation, the derailing of the programme and the failure of the negotiations on the debt. Its strategy is to implement a harsh austerity programme that it wants to blame on the present government. This is the 4th memorandum that it seeks to implement, offering it in exchange for the settlement of Greece’s debt,” the sources added.