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Greek PM tells Europe not to consider itself to be "hub of the Universe"

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras noted that Russia’s global role was growing
Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras (center) in St. Petersburg Alexander Ryumin/TASS
Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras (center) in St. Petersburg
© Alexander Ryumin/TASS

ST. Petersburg, June 19 /TASS/. Europe should not consider itself to be "the hub of the Universe", Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said in his speech at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum on Friday.

"The world is different from what it used to be in the past. We, in Europe, have for long had an illusion that we are the hub of the Universe in the literal sense; we considered ourselves to be the world center and continued to see and count exclusively on our nearest immediate entourage," the Greek prime minister said.

"Nevertheless, the planet’s economic center has already shifted from that place because newly emerging forces are coming to play a more vital role at the economic and geopolitical levels," Tsipras stressed.

He noted that Russia’s global role was growing.

"The G8 group and the growing significance of regional cooperation in Asia and G20; as well as increased cooperation among the BRICS countries indicate that a new economic world is being formed," Tsipras said.

"The Eurasian Union, a new organization of regional integration, is a potential example of new sources for the production of wealth, benefits and economic might," the Greek prime minister went on to say.

He said that all that would not make the world more stable because the old social economic challenges - such as poverty, unemployment and marginalization of various social groups - continued to exist.

"It should be taken into account that the center of gravity of global economic development is shifting, and all global challenges should be accepted with a glance to this fact. Consequently, the process of economic development will get faster," Tsipras said.

According to him, the most urgent question for the western world should be whether it will be able to respond to contemporary challenges by spanning bridges of cooperation with the developing world or the West will remain committed to the old dogmas and will continue building walls around itself.

Tsipras described the Ukraine crisis as a new wound of instability in the heart of Europe. In his view, it is a bad sign for international relations.

"Instead of prosperity and economic cooperation, processes that are leading to war, militarization and imposition of sanctions have started in the region. It is a vicious circle, which should be broken as soon as possible," Tsipras said calling for implementation of the Minsk agreements for the Ukraine settlement.