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Alexis Tsipras: “Syriza, Hope of an Entire People”

Translated Wednesday 23 May 2012, by Gene Zbikowski and reviewed by Henry Crapo

An interview with Alexis Tsipras, the president of the Syriza coalition.

“If the small parties wind up entering the government, they shall have to tell the Greek people how they’re going to govern. They won’t be in agreement with the popular will, as expressed on May 6. In fact, the problem isn’t how to form a government but whether or not to follow the policies of the memorandum, which has been condemned by the Greek people. Even were they to manage to form a government in extremis, it would not work for very long if it based on that policy (…)"

“In the context of new legislative elections on June 17, Syriza is forming a united parliamentary team. To be sure not to be robbed of the 50-seat bonus (granted to the party that leads in the elections – editor’s note), we plan to change our statutes, which we shall file with the Supreme Court. We fundamentally do not agree with this bonus that is granted to the leading party when parliamentary seats are apportioned. As a consequence, if we come to power, we shall put in place what the left has been demanding for a long time: complete proportionality (…) "

“Since May 6, Syriza has completely changed from the party it used to be [1]. Today, it no longer is a force representing a small portion of the left – it is a living movement in Greek society. It doesn’t express just the hope of people on the left, but also that of an entire people which wants this policy to stop, and that democracy and social justice be present in Greece. So it’s a new coalition that’s forming, that of the people. This analysis forces us to reconstruct ourselves as one party of the people, which will be popular, democratic, united and open. In reality, it’s the 1.6 million people who voted for Syriza who have done this.

These are excerpts selected from an interview with Alexis Tsipras. You’ll find the whole interview in l’Humanité Dimanche, sold at newsstands beginning on May 16.

[1Editor’s note: The multi-party coalition of the radical left

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