To get desperately needed bailout funds, Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has submitted his country to draconian economic reforms that the people had rejected in a referendum just a week earlier.

The Guardian reports:

Greece has promised to pass laws introducing controversial economic reforms by Wednesday. These include reforming the VAT system, overhauling pensions and signing up to plans that ensure immediate spending cuts in the event of breaching creditor-mandated budget targets.

Athens has also agreed to sell off state assets worth €50bn, with the proceeds earmarked for a trust fund supervised by its creditors. Half the fund will be used to recapitalise Greek banks, while the remaining €25bn will pay down Greek debts. …

In another humiliating climbdown, Athens could be forced to reverse measures it passed upon assuming power that are deemed to run counter to the bailout philosophy. Potentially, this could mean firing the government cleaners that Syriza rehired with such fanfare.

Paul Krugman, a Nobel Prize-winning economist and critic of Greek austerity, said the creditors’ demands “went beyond harsh into pure vindictiveness, [leading to the] complete destruction of national sovereignty [with] no hope of relief.”

“It’s a grotesque betrayal of everything the European project was supposed to stand for,” he wrote hours before the final deal was announced.

The Guardian reports that “one financial analyst claimed the deal was worse than the 1919 Treaty of Versailles that crushed Weimar Germany with debt and paved the way for the second world war.”

Read more here.

Above: “We have an a-Greek-ment,” said Donald Tusk, head of the European Council, after almost 17 hours of talks between Eurozone leaders.

— Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.

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