Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras is urging people to vote “no” in Sunday’s referendum.
The vote asks Greeks to decide whether to accept creditors’ proposals for more austerity in exchange for more bailout loans. That will give the prime minister a mandate to negotiate a better deal for Greece within the euro zone.
Katerina Antonopoulos is from Saskatoon, but is living in Greece right now.
“Saying yes would make more tax hikes. They are already paying 23 per cent on everything, so to increase that obviously is even more of a problem,” she said.
Opposition parties say a “no” vote would drive Greece out of the euro and into an even more impoverished future.
“Now there’s fear about leaving the euro and what will happen to the money people have in the bank. It’s getting people afraid of what to do. They start thinking, ‘well maybe we should vote yes,’” she said
On Sunday, Greeks will cast ballots on a demand by creditors for cuts in government programs in exchange for badly-needed bailout funds.
The campaigning by law ends Friday to give the country a 24-hour blackout period before people start casting their votes.
Much of the ambiguity arises from the complicated question on the ballot paper:
“Must the agreement plan be accepted which was submitted by the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund to the Eurogroup of 25 June, 2015, and is comprised of two parts which make up their joint proposal? The first document is titled ‘reforms for the completion of the current program and beyond’ and the second ‘Preliminary debt sustainability analysis.'”
Voters are asked to check one of two boxes: “not approved/no” and — below it — “approved/yes.”
A Greek poll showed the two sides are neck and neck before the referendum. It also showed an overwhelming majority — 74 per cent — want the country to remain in the euro, compared to 15 per cent who want a national currency.
-with files from the Canadian Press
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