Fresh anti-EU graffiti in Athens, 28 June 2015. Photograph: Alkis Konstantinidis/Reuters
We call on David Cameron to support the organisation of a European conference to agree debt cancellation for Greece and other countries that need it, informed by debt audits and funded by recovering money from the banks and financial speculators who were the real beneficiaries of bailouts (Greek leader calls last ditch referendum on bailout, 27 June). We believe there must be an end to the enforcing of austerity policies that are causing injustice and poverty in Europe and across the world. We urge the creation of UN rules to deal with government debt crises promptly, fairly and with respect for human rights, and to signal to the banks and financiers that we won’t keep bailing them out for reckless lending.
Frances O’Grady General secretary, TUC
Len McCluskey General secretary, Unite the Union
Paul Kenny General secretary, GMB
Manuel Cortes General secretary, TSSA
Sarah-Jayne Clifton Director, Jubilee Debt Campaign
Paul Mackney Chair, Greece Solidarity Campaign
Nick Dearden Global Justice Now
Owen Epsley War on Want
James Meadway New Economics Foundation
Ann Pettifor Prime Economics
Diane Abbott MP
Dave Anderson MP
Richard Burgon MP
Jeremy Corbyn MP
Jonathan Edwards MP
Roger Godsiff MP
Harry Harpham MP
Carolyn Harris MP
George Kerevan MP
Ian Lavery MP
Clive Lewis MP
Rebecca Long-Bailey MP
Caroline Lucas MP
John McDonnell MP
Liz Mcinnes MP
Rachael Maskell MP
Michael Meacher MP
Grahame Morris MP
Kate Osamor MP
Liz Saville-Roberts MP
Cat Smith MP
Chris Stephens MP
Jo Stevens MP
Catherine West MP
Hywel Williams MP
• For some time it seemed that an agreement between Greece and the troika might be reached. As it became clear, four days before Tuesday’s deadline, that no such agreement will be reached, Alexis Tsipras is right to ask the Greek people whether they would support him in sticking to the policy on which he was elected or whether they are prepared to give in to the troika’s terms. The troika will not allow Greece these five or six extra days to hold the referendum. If the Greeks were to support Tsipras, Greece would have to default with all the dire consequences not only for Greece but also for the eurozone, and that disaster would have been put off by these few days. But if the result of the referendum were to accept the troika’s terms, the crisis for Greece and the eurozone would be ended, certainly in the short term and possibly in the longer term also. It seems insane to throw that possibility away, however exhausted and exasperated the troika is. It seems that the troika now actually wants to make sure there is a Grexit.
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• It is not correct to argue, as Franzisca Augstein does (Opinion, 26 June), that, for Angela Merkel to save the EU, the northern countries must agree to pay for all “concomitant inefficiencies” in Greece. One of these inefficiencies is in the collection of taxes. Wilful inefficiency in the north in stamping on money-laundering and tax-evasion services provided by Luxembourg, the UK and its far-flung dependencies, and also, increasingly, the Netherlands cannot be overlooked.
While the proliferation of small enterprises in Greece proves an especial difficulty in the collection of taxes, the political classes in Europe are also to blame. Their response to the criminal enterprises offering money laundering and tax evasion services elsewhere in the EU is hesitant for fear of exposing politicians around the world, including perhaps some also in Europe.
• Europe is at a crossroads. We have a once in a generation opportunity to transform Europe from the ground up. We need to dismantle the institutions that make up the European behemoth that is strangling both Greece and Europe in the interests of the financial and corporate elite, and transform it into a union based on solidarity and democratic responsibility that respects the sovereign wishes of the nations that make up Europe. Will Greece be the Rubicon that blazes the trail of European transformation or will the forces of reaction succeed in smothering their nemesis? The battle lines are now drawn. Do we want an undemocratic Europe run by bankers and other corporate and financial elites who use their financial and economic leverage to beggar all before them in their quest for power, privilege and profit? Or will we finally wrest control from these elites and begin the task of constructing a new Europe based on new democratic institutions?
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• The decisions of the Greek government not to implement international agreements made with other countries when these countries were giving billions of their taxpayers’ money to bail out Greece is indefensible. Threatening to bring down international institutions is equally indefensible. These like all human institutions are less than perfect but were carefully built over many years. They need improvement not destruction. Most EU countries made democratic decisions to join the eurozone. Most kept to the policies that such a loss of control over currency entailed. Only Greece has refused to keep to the agreement it made at the time of its bailout. It blames everyone else for the consequences of its own actions and threatens default on repayment to the taxpayers of all these countries, including the poorest.
• Greece’s prime minister has branded the deal on offer as humiliating and unacceptable. If the Greek people nevertheless vote to accept it, how can Tsipras and Yanis Varoufakis stay on to implement something they fundamentally disagree with?
Brookmans Park, Hertfordshire