Sartorius presents Tsipras in May 2013./ Picture: Foundation Alternativas
Eduardo González. Madrid
The victory of Syriza, the left-wing party of Alexis Tsipras, “indicates that Europe cannot continue that extreme austerity policy practiced until now”, so it depends on Europe whether this is an isolated case or something that spreads to other countries. These are warnings by the vice-president of the Foundation Alternativas, Nicolás Sartorius, in statements made to The Diplomat in Spain.
According to the veteran left-wing politician from the years of the Transition, Syriza’s victory should not entail radical changes, because Tsipras is, first of all, “a very political and very realistic person who has not achieved absolute majority and who has already said that will reach agreements with everyone”. “I think that he is going to negotiate with the European Union”, Sartorius continued, who introduced Tsipras in Madrid during a public engagement of the Foundation Alternativas in May 2013.
“Tsipras is aware that Greece is going through a terrible situation, that it is a small country with a lighter weight in Europe, which only represents two per cent of the GDP of the EU” and, therefore, “he will have to negotiate a formula that allows Greece growing and paying the debt with more convenient instalments, with lower interest rates and a recovery policy for the Greek economy”.
“Tsipras is a realistic politician and he knows that he will have to negotiate in Greece and in the EU”
According to Sartorius (in whose political biography appears his membership of PCE, his participation in the founding Izquierda Unida and his integration into the tendency and subsequent party of the Nueva Izquierda, whose members end up being part of the PSOE), what happened in Greece “is important from the symbolic and psychological points of view”, but it should not entail important changes in Europe, at least not immediately.
“Syriza’s triumph can be an isolated case or not, it depends on what the European Union does”, he stated. “It is a sign showing that Europe cannot continue with that extreme austerity policy that has been practicing until now”, he added. “If it does not change that policy, there can be more phenomena like Syriza”, Satorius warned. He gave as an example the possible modification of the recent massive purchase of sovereign debt by the European Central Bank, “an important decision that can favour the recovery of the economy”.