ATHENS – A survey has found Greeks almost evenly divided over whether the government should deal with international lenders even at the cost of more austerity.
But at the same time some 75 percent want to stay in the Eurozone, contradicting the opinion many had on whether Prime Minister and Radical Left SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras should renege on campaign promises to get money from the troika of the European Union-International Monetary Fund-European Central Bank (EU-IMF-ECB).
The creditors are holding back a 7.2-billion euro ($8.1 billion) installment, among the last in 240 billion euros ($270.4 billion) in two bailouts that began five years ago.
The poll by Alco for news website Newsit showed 45 percent of Greeks want SYRIZA to get an agreement even at the cost of compromising its principles so that the country won’t default and be pushed out of the Eurozone.
Going broke fast, Greece on June 5 didn’t make a 300 million euro ($337.98 million) payment due the IMF and said it would put that installment into four others due this month to pay some 1.6 billion ($1.8 billion) at the end of the month in a bundled payment – if it has the money to do so.
Only 37 percent support early elections to resolve the standoff over the cash-for-reforms deal. SYRIZA has sent out mixed signals on whether there would be new polls although it was elected in January.