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ATHENS – Victims of a 2012 Greek decision to stiff investors with 74 percent losses demonstrated Oct. 31 outside the Finance Ministry demanding to be held harmless.

The protesters were upset that Prime Minister and New Democracy Conservative leader Antonis Samaras broke his promise that they would get their money back when he took office. After he did, he ignored them, including those in the Diaspora, many of whom lost much or all of their savings.

The losses were incurred under a so-called Private Sector Involvement (PSI) scheme devised by then-Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos during a previous PASOK Socialist administration in 2012. He is now Deputy Premier/Foreign Minister serving in Samaras’ coalition government.

The bondholders demanded a meeting with Finance Minister Gikas Hardouvelis, who also ignored them. A second group of PSI victims protested outside the Bank of Greece building in the northern port city of Thessaloniki.

“The government wants to just let the issue be forgotten by refusing to find a solution,” protesters said in a statement. “[The government] hopes that we too will give up our efforts to take back what was stolen from us,” they said.

New Democracy MP Dora Bakoyannis criticized her own government and Samaras for failing to honor its vow to help the 15,000 small bondholders who took hits along with big banks and financial institutions who together lost billions of euros as Greece failed in a desperate bid to write down its debt, still at a staggering 370 billion euros ($470 billion).

In a question submitted in Parliament for Hardouvelis, Bakoyannis said that despite the various pledges made to the victims of PSI over the last couple of years, none of these have been implemented.

Hardouvelis ignored her too, despite her standing as a stalwart in the party who narrowly lost a chance several years ago to be its leader and a chance to become the country’s first female Prime Minister.

The post Greek Bond Holders Protest Big Losses, Bakoyianni Backs Them appeared first on The National Herald.

Source: The National Herald
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