The year 2016 will be one of recovery and rebuilding, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said in a New Year message to the Greek people on Thursday, just hours before the end of 2015.
“It is the year that will mark a final exit from the economic crisis and, together, the end of supervision and the regaining of our national sovereignty,” he said.
Looking back, Tsipras said that 2015 had been a year when the
“Greek people had held their heads high and openly fought for their rights, and the message of democracy and dignity that they sent to the ends of the earth will remain indelibly marked in collective memory.”
It will remain in history as a year of struggle and solidarity and will always be a milestone for those striving for a better world, he said.
Now Greece was leaving behind a long and harsh period of crisis and entering the next five years of renewal for the country, a five-year period of rebuilding that would see major changes and reforms that the country needs, Tsipras added.
“So that in five years from today, when we celebrate the 200th anniversary since the Greek revolution, we will have built a
Greece that is worthy of its history and its people. A modern European country, with deeply rooted equality before the law, meritocracy and social justice. An islet of security, stability and social progress in a broadly destabilised region and a constant cradle of democracy and culture,” he said.
Though great challenges lay ahead, Tsipras added, “united and determined we will succeed.”
Referring to the refugee crisis, Tsipras said that this was another challenge facing the country, which it must face with humanity and solidarity.
“It is a moral duty and dictate to stand beside the people uprooted from their country because of war and destruction,” he noted. “Something that we must all of us remember is that, despite the economic difficulties, the crisis and our daily problems, most of us belong to the fortunate of this world,” he added.
For this reason, Greece had an obligation to take the lead in ensuring that Europe assumes the role that befits it, both in terms of receiving refugees and in establishing peace in the war-torn Middle East, dealing with the causes of the refugee crisis directly and leading to the final defeat of racism, intolerance and fear.