Crisis: Greece; Athens closes 8 embassies and 2 consulates

23 October, 17:38

(ANSAmed) - ATHENS, OCTOBER 23 - At a time when Greece needs the Diaspora more than ever, the Greek government - under pressure to cut expenses by its international lenders - will be closing six embassies and two consulates around the world instead of spreading spending cuts around its diplomatic missions. Embassies set to shut are in Hanoi (Vietnam), Lima (Peru'), Montevideo (Uruguay), Wellington (New Zealand), Khartoum (Sudan) and Harare (Zimbabwe), while the consulates that will be terminated are in Atlanta (Georgia,Usa) and Perth (Australia). The initial list of diplomatic offices to close also included the Greek consulate in Los Angeles, but a last-minute reprieve from the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dimitri Avramopoulos, saved it. Prime Minister Antonis Samaras is trying to conclude a 13,5 billion euros spending cut and tax hike plan to please the Troika of the European Union-International Monetary Fund-European Central Bank (EU-IMF-ECB) that is putting up 250 billion euros in two bailouts. Part of the savings include the elimination of the diplomatic missions in the eight cities, while others around the world will be spared from cuts. (ANSAmed).

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