20:11 GMT19 September 2020
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    Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis said that leaving the Eurozone is out of the question for Greece as Athens has struggled to repay its International Monetary Fund loan.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Leaving the Eurozone is out of the question for Greece as Athens has struggled to repay its International Monetary Fund (IMF) loan, Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis said during a speech at the Brookings Institution in Washington, DC.

    “Toying with Grexit… is profoundly anti-European,” Varoufakis warned on Thursday when asked whether the country would consider leaving the Eurozone amid the possibility of Athens defaulting on its $485-million IMF loan.

    “Because toying with Grexit is… something we don’t do. We [Greece] are refusing to discuss it,” Varoufakis said.

    In February 2015, the country's new Syriza government promised to pursue economic reforms after Greek and Eurozone finance ministers agreed to extend the bailout deal until late June, 2015.

    In early April 2015, Varoufakis held negotiations with IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde, having assured her that the Greek government will comply with all of its obligations to the Troika of international creditors, which include IMF, the European Union and the European Central Bank (ECB).

    Greece now needs to come up with a reform plan before the next meeting with the EU Finance Ministers scheduled for April 24, in order to receive the next aid package.

    Varoufakis said on Thursday that Greece was willing to compromise with the IMF and its European partners to reach an agreement and avoid at all costs the possibility of leaving the Eurozone.

    "We will compromise we will compromise and we will compromise in order to come to a speedy agreement, but we're not to end up being compromised,” Varoufakis said.

    The Greek finance minister is in Washington, DC for the IMF and World Bank 2015 Spring Meetings — a series of seminars and conferences on economic and development subjects scheduled for this weekend.

    The meetings come at a crucial time for Greece as it repaid a $485-million loan to the IMF last week, while attempting to fight off bankruptcy and adhering to strict economic reforms. Greece still owes some $270 billion to its lenders.


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