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Referendum: the Greeks begin voting

Un bureau de vote d'Athènes, dimanche 5 juillet.

“Oxi” or “Nai”, the Greeks decide today. Polling stations opened at 7 am (6 hours in France) Sunday, July 5 for a referendum on the acceptance or rejection by voters of the latest proposal for reform made by the country’s creditors.

“Should we accept the agreement plan submitted by the European Commission, the European Central Bank (ECB) and International Monetary Fund (IMF) during the Eurogroup of 25 June? “, that is the question that will meet nearly 10 million Greeks. The government of Prime Minister radical leftist Alexis Tsipras called to vote “no”

Read our explanations.:
Why? Which calls to vote what? The issues … after the referendum in Greece

uncertain result

The last four polls published not promise a triumph neither side: three give the advantage to yes, a non, but with respective loans by 1.4 points at most .

The referendum takes place after five months of discussions, Eurogroups in exceptional peaks, between the Greek government – formed in January by the radical left Syriza Alexis Tsipras and the right-wing sovereignist ANEL – and the country’s creditors. These were granted to Greece since 2010 240 billion euros of aid loans or promises, but have not paid for nearly a year, Athens and wish to limit the austerity policies.

Initially, the government seemed Tsipras hope that, thanks to that would not at least half of the Greeks behind him, he could return stronger at the negotiating table. Opposite, some creditors hoping no doubt, as acknowledged by the European Parliament President Martin Schulz, the consultation will finish with “the Syriza era” and its risk of contagion to protest other countries of EU.

To push yes, they therefore have not as the equivalent to a Greek exit from the euro zone, to which 74% of Greeks are attached, according to a . poll published Friday, against only 15% who would return to the drachma well

Blitz

The blitz – nine days -for the referendum took place in a tense atmosphere: Greeks withdrew their money from banks last weekend, which were closed one week. Withdrawals are pending limited to 60 euros per person per day. But they hoard this money, still slowing the economy, and deserting most stores. . Except where power they target mass starches, pasta or condensed milk, emptying some shelves.

After preparation – posters, newsletters, routing urns, development of Websites sides – particularly fast, the two groups held two large rallies Friday night in Athens. Match virtually nil: 25,000 in “no,” Alexis Tsipras invited to show they want “live with dignity in Europe” , and 22 000 for ‘yes’

At Athens airport Saturday afternoon, a plane from Cyprus led the Greek expatriate voters. Kokkinos Kostas, 60, had made the trip “on purpose to bring” his voice to “yes.” Thanasis Hadzilacos, Professor of the Open University of Cyprus, thought “no” vote, while considering that the question “nonsense” , but he wanted first “consult friends of Athens “

Saturday night, has not received the support of several hundred people in London, Dublin or Lisbon.

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