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Greece urges lenders to fulfill commitments

Xinhua | Updated: 2016-12-15 01:03

ATHENS - Greece is acting in line with the bailout agreement and international creditors should also honor their commitments, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said on Wednesday before departing for Brussels for a EU summit.

"Everything we do is fully in line with the agreement," he said in a statement.

The comment came after Berlin's message that lenders should assess whether a package of relief measures the Greek government announced last week for low-income pensioners and islanders was compatible with bailout obligations.

The German Finance Ministry said that only after a clear OK should short-term debt measures announced on Dec 5 by the Eurogroup be implemented.

The EU Commission has also commented that Athens' measures would be thoroughly assessed.

"Everyone must respect the Greek people and their great sacrifices of the past seven years in the name of Europe.

We are shouldering the refugee crisis and the harsh austerity policies. We invite our partners to respond to their commitments," Tsipras said.

He urged for the swift implementation of the short-term debt measures.

The Left leader's surprise proclamation last Thursday that a Christmas benefit will be paid out to pensioners and the islands of the Aegean which have been mostly affected by the refugee flows will be exempted from a VAT hike, was not welcomed by creditors.

Athens insists that the relief measures were necessary for social cohesion.

With a follow-up review of Greece's third bailout dragging on, lenders have mounted pressure on Athens for more austerity measures and reforms to unlock further aid and fulfill their commitments under the agreement.

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