Greece’s outspoken finance minister resigned on Monday, removing a major obstacle to any last-minute deal to keep Athens in the euro zone after Greeks voted resoundingly to reject the austerity terms of a bailout.
Yanis Varoufakis, a self-proclaimed “erratic Marxist” economist who infuriated euro zone partners with his unconventional style and hectoring lectures, had campaigned for Sunday’s sweeping ‘No’ vote, accusing Greece’ creditors of “terrorism”.
“I was made aware of a certain ‘preference’ by some Eurogroup participants, and assorted ‘partners’, for my… ‘absence’ from its meetings; an idea that the Prime Minister judged to be potentially helpful to him in reaching an agreement,” Varoufakis said in a statement.
His sacrifice, after promising Greeks he would win a better deal within a day of their overwhelming referendum vote, suggested leftist Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras is determined to try to reach a last-ditch compromise with European leaders.
With banks shuttered, cash machines running out of banknotes and sympathy for Athens among EU governments close to exhausted, Greece’s fate is largely in the hands of the European Central Bank and of German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Read more at Reuters