Wednesday, June 19 2024

Greece backs sanctions against Russia, sides with democracy, says PM

Greece backs sanctions against Russia, sides with democracy, says PM

Greece, the birthplace of democracy, backs EU sanctions against Russia after its unlawful invasion of Ukraine and stands ready to host Ukraine refugees, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis told Parliament on Tuesday.

“Greece was always on the right side of history and we are doing the same today. For Greece there are no dilemmas, we are on the side of Ukraine, freedom and democracy,” he said. Russia’s invasion awakened old nightmares of war as Russia attempts to dismember Ukraine, he said.

“The European Union was born out of the ashes of World War II. It responded with the largest package of sanctions it has ever launched. The EU’s actions awaken the world’s public opinion, they are the intangible force of democracy,” he said.

Mitsotakis told lawmakers that the European Union must also support countries and businesses from a further jump in energy costs. “We cannot rule out attempts by Russia to blackmail. We all realize this … will disrupt global supplies and probably trigger a further rise in (energy) prices,” he said. “But we all agree it is the one-off price European people will pay for defending the values which are the foundations of our continent.”

Greece has spent more than 2 billion euros since September in power bill subsidies for households, businesses and farmers to mitigate the impact of record gas prices. Mitsotakis said the government’s assistance will continue until the energy crisis is seen off.