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Greece threatens to sue EU institutions to block country’s expulsion from euro zone

June 30, 2015, 3:01 UTC+3 LONDON
European Central Bank turned down a request from Athens for a €6 billion increase to keep pace with deposit flight; this effectively pulls the plug on the Greek banking system
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© AP Photo/Nikolas Giakoumidis

LONDON, June 30. /TASS/. Greece may seek a court injunction against the EU institutions to block the country’s expulsion from the euro zone and stop suffocation of the Greek banking system by the European Central Bank, Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis said on Monday.

"The Greek government will make use of all out legal rights," the Daily Telegraph cited Varoufakis as saying. "We are taking advice and will certainly consider an injunction at the European Court of Justice. The EU treaties make no provision for euro exit and we refuse to accept it. Our membership is not negotiable," the finance minister said.

Any request for an injunction against EU bodies at the European Court would be an unprecedented development, further complicating the crisis, the Daily Telegraph says. "Greek officials said they are seriously considering suing the European Central Bank itself for freezing emergency liquidity for the Greek banks at €89 billion. It turned down a request from Athens for a €6 billion increase to keep pace with deposit flight. This effectively pulls the plug on the Greek banking system. Syriza [ruling party] claims that this is a prima facie breach of the ECB’s legal duty to maintain financial stability. ‘How can they justify setting off a run on the Greek banking system?’ said one official," the newspaper continues.

Varoufakis said Greece has enough liquidity to keep afloat until the referendum on July 5 but acknowledged that capital controls introduced over the weekend made life difficult for Greek companies.

Meanwhile, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker intruded deeply in Greece’s internal affairs, calling on voters not to "commit suicide" at the referendum. "He [Juncker] denied that the creditors were demanding pension cuts as part of the deal, a claim dismissed a ‘preposterous lie’ by one Greek official. In fact Brussels wants a cut equal to 1% of GDP by next year, including a phasing out of the low pension supplement, and other indirect measures. One Syriza MP, Dimitris Papadimoulis, caught the mood in Athens. ‘Juncker is calling for the overthrow of the government,’ he said," the Daily Telegraph wrote.

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