Blame game only helps Europe's enemies says Varoufakis

30th March 2015, Comments 0 comments

Finger-pointing between Germany and Greece will only play into the hands of Europe's enemies, Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis said on Monday, pleading for the two countries to bury the hatchet.

"The only ones who profit from this toxic blame game are Europe's enemies," Varoufakis wrote in a leader column in the business daily Handelsblatt.

Athens and Berlin have been engaged in a bitter war of words recently over plans by the new Greek government under Alexis Tsipras to renegotiate the terms of its massive international bailout.

European paymaster Germany has been leading the push for austerity in Europe, with Greece complaining that the punishing budget cuts demanded were damaging its economy and threatening to force it out of the eurozone.

Tensions came to a head earlier this month in a spat over a disputed video clip in which Varoufakis was shown raising his middle finger to Germany.

But the minister insists the video was doctored.

"This must stop," Varoufakis wrote. "Only then can Greece, with support of its partners, focus on implementing effective reforms and growth-orientated policy strategies," he said.

Rumours have been circulating that Varoufakis could resign, but they were denied by Athens last Friday.

Athens is set to present a list of economic reform proposals to international creditors this week in a bid to unblock a new 7.2 billion euro ($7.8 billion) tranche of EU-IMF loans and avoid a debt default.

© 2015 AFP

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