Even before the Greek parliament voted to approve a new bailout deal that includes tough – and controversial – austerity measures, protesters took the streets in Athens.
A little more than a quarter of the 149 lawmakers from Tsipras’ radical-left Syriza party either voted against or abstained in Wednesday’s vote.
Germany has been the largest single contributor to Greece’s bailouts and has taken a hard line, insisting on stringent spending cuts, tax hikes and wide-ranging economic reforms in return.
Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras managed to push through a series of unpopular reforms demanded by the country’s global creditors, despite scenes of anger over austerity in Athens, where protesters threw firebombs at police.
Many of Syriza’s hardline leftists voted against the measures, as did former finance minister Yanis Varoufakis, the head of parliament Zoe Constantopoulou and Energy Minister Panagiotis Lafazanis.
In response, the Greek government announced that banks would reopen on Monday for the first time in nearly three weeks, although withdrawals would still be capped at 60 euros ($65) a day.
In a news conference following the ECB’s regular policy meeting, Draghi said the European Central Bank agreed on Thursday to increase that credit amount by 900 million euros over one week.
Greece must pay the European Central Bank a huge debt payment of 4.2 billion euros as early as Monday, and is in arrears to the International Monetary Fund.
Tsipras, who proposed the bill despite his personal opposition to the austerity measures, said he felt negotiations with the Eurogroup of finance ministers had left behind a “heritage of self-respect and democracy in Europe”.
Tsipras said the fragile Greek banking sector will give €25 Billion Euros to an asset sales fund in the next 30 days to avoid a bail-in.
Sixty lawmakers from Merkel’s Christian Democratic bloc voted against the third bailout for Greece, according to German news agency DPA, marking the biggest rebellion to date over a bailout deal.
Greece’s troubled left-wing government was seeking urgent relief from European lenders Thursday, after it pushed a harsh austerity package through parliament, triggering a revolt in the governing party and violent…
Earlier, the ECB also chose to leave its benchmark interest rate at a record low of 0.05 per cent. The decision was a formality because the bank has said the rate can not go any lower.
European leaders and the Greek government agreed on a conditional bailout deal on Monday in hope of preventing the country going bankrupt.
Prior to the vote, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras made a passionate appeal to parliament, saying there was no other choice to avert economic collapse.