President of Democray of Greece Prokopis Pavlopoulos hailed Merkel’s role in the refugee crisis during his recent visit to Germany, where he met with German Cancellor and also with the German Presiden Joachim Gauck .
Regarding the refugee crisis, the Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos described it as an “existential matter” of Europe.
“All the peoples of Europe have to fulfill their debt towards genuine refugees without phobias and of course will have to work to end the war in Syria, which is the root of this evil,” he noted.
Concerning the guarding of EU’s external borders, he recognized the need for collaboration with EU countries and Frontex, but ruled out joint Greek and Turkish patrols.
Focusing on Turkey, Pavlopoulos said the country needs to live up to its commitment to control the flow of refugees and especially economic migrants who leave from Turkey, “often with the cooperation of the Turkish authorities.”
He also noted the need to reactivate the readmission agreements.
Regarding the threat of terrorism, Pavlopolos said that Europe must be ruthless with terrorists who commit war crimes and must not show any tolerance and urged people to distinguish between terrorists and refugees.
German Presiden Joachim Gauck described the refugee issue as critical and acknowledged that Greece is faced with an even greater burden as a result of the migration flows, in addition to the challenges of economic reform and that there is room for improving European solidarity on the issue, since it is in the common interest of Europeans not to leave Greece struggle securing its borders unaided.
For the financial and recession crisis that Greece is facing for six years long , the President stated :
“Greece will fully meet its obligations and our partners must also fulfill their own obligations.”
Following the [program] review, which should be finished as soon as possible to avoid a problem with the seemingly positive growth prospects of the Greek economy, it is necessary to immediately start talks on the Greek debt – not for a haircut, as it is not possible by European law, but other methods, which will lead to relief and have been accepted by our partners. Especially as regards the sustainability of Greece’s public debt and the so far, extremely dubious, austerity policy,” he said
German Presiden Joachim Gauck assured that Greece can depend on European solidarity, insisting on Germany’s commitment to seeing Greece remain in the European Union and underlined that Athens’ reform programme has become one of Germany’s main policies.
Referring to the “unprecedented” crisis that the Greek people are facing, Greek President Pavlopoulos asked the European partners to take into account the unprecedented crisis that tests the Greek people and to try to establish some mutual understanding despite some initial mistakes, obsessions and misconceptions.