Asia-Pacific left statement of solidarity with the people and government of Greece

'Your struggle is our struggle'

We, the undersigned, stand in solidarity with the people of Greece and the Syriza-led government as they prepare for a referendum on July 5, 2015 on whether to accept the continuation of the program of neoliberal austerity or chart a new course free from the debilitating stranglehold of the “troika” — the International Monetary Fund, the European Central Bank, and the European Commission.   We support the call of Syriza for a 'no vote' as the only option for the people of Greece, especially the working classes, to assert sovereign control over the country's economy and their own future. We condemn the “troika” and their allied political institutions, for forcing their policies of neoliberal austerity, privatization, deregulation, and savage cutbacks dismantling the public sector. We, therefore, hold the “troika” responsible for the massive unemployment, increased poverty, greater social inequality, and a severe economic depression now being experienced by Greece. The irony of it all is that the huge debts the “troika” is demanding for repayment did not go to Greece but were used to repay private sector creditors such as French and German banks. In other words, these are onerous and illegitimate debts. We had welcomed the election of the Syriza-led government on a program committed to ending the neoliberal-austerity policies imposed by the EU creditors and we stand in solidarity with them as they struggle to implement an anti-austerity program. The austerity program has been assessed as a colossal failure by leading economists worldwide. Despite this, the insistence of the EU creditors and their political and economic allies to resuscitate this failed program, can only be construed as a cynical political maneuver whose real aim is to bring down the Syriza government, the first anti-neoliberal, anti-austerity government to be popularly elected in Europe.  Syriza was a product of the mass movements’ and working people’s struggles against neoliberal austerity promoted by unbridled capitalism. Similar political organizations have arisen across Europe, such as Podemos in Spain, a product of the anti-austerity 'indignados' movement.  The specter that haunts the European capitalist class is a 'Syriza syndrome' spreading to other parts of Europe, particularly in Spain, with the election of an anti-neoliberal Podemos government. By bringing down the Syriza government, the capitalist hydra aims to strangle such a movement at its birth. Peoples from all over the world, in both developing and developed countries, have been struggling for the past decades against the imposition of a whole range of neo-liberal measures - liberalization, deregulation, and privatization, including neoliberal austerity programs imposed by capitalist governments led by the US and its allies, through the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial institutions.   There has also been a long history of struggles against debt repayments and for the cancellation of odious and illegitimate debts. The world has experienced how debt burdens and neo-liberal impositions have created havoc on economies, depleted natural resources, exacerbated inequalities, and impoverished peoples while siphoning off billions of dollars to global capitalist banks, giant corporations and imperialist governments. We welcome the people of Greece into the struggle of peoples of the global South against neoliberalism, onerous debts and austerity. Your struggle, is our struggle. Your victory, is our victory. Initial signatories: Eduardo C. Tadem, Ph.D., Professor, University of the Philippines Reihana Mohideen, Transform Asia Ric Reyes, Philippines Sonny Melencio, Partido Lakas ng Masa (PLM) - Philippines Jean Enriquez, World March of Women Focus on the Global South Mary Ann Manahan, Focus on the Global South, Philippines Josua Mata, SENTRO, Philippines Lidy Nacpil, Asian Peoples Movement on Debt and Development Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM) Socialist Alliance, Australia Manarishi Dhital, Nepal Cora Valdez Fabros, STOP the War Coalition, Philippines Isagani Serrano, President, Philippine Rural Reconstruction Movement (PRRM) Amado Mendoza Jr., PhD., Professor, University of the Philippines Teresa Encarnacion Tadem, Ph.D., Professor, University of the Philippines Joseph Anthony Lim, Ph.D., Professor, Ateneo de Manila University Jafar Suryomenggolo, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Kyoto University Socialist Aotearoa, New Zealand Michael Treen, National Director, Unite Union of Aotearoa/New Zealand Alab Katipunan, Philippines Marcela Olivera, Red Vida, Bolivia Benjamin Quinones, Jr., Ph.D., Executive Coordinator, Intercontinental Network for the Promotion of Social Solidarity Economy (RIPESS-Asia) Fatima Gay Molina, Center for Disaster Preparedness (CDP-Philippines) Janus Isaac Nolasco, University Researcher, University of the Philippines Aries Arugay, Ph.D., Associate Professor, University of the Philippines Asian Regional Exchange for New Alternatives (ARENA) Alternative ASEAN Network (ALTSEAN) Krishna Kumar KK, Kerala Sastra Sahitya Parishad (KSSP-India) Maria Luisa Torres, PhD., Professor, Ateneo de Manila University Maria Dulce F. Natividad, Ph.D., University of the Philippines Liga ng Makabagong Kabataan (LMK – Philippines) Nathan Gilbert Quimpo, Ph.D., University of Tsukuba George Aseniero, Dapitan, Philippines. Fatima Gay Molina, Center for Disaster Preparedness, Philippines Liga ng Makabagong Kabataan, Philippines Awami Workers Party, Pakistan Chris White, socialist, former Secretary of the United Trades & Labor Council of South Australia Sam Wainwright, Socialist Alliance City Councillor for Fremantle, Western Australia Sue Bolton, Socialist Alliance City Councillor for Moreland, Victoria, Australia Resistance, Young Socialist Alliance, Australia Tim Gooden, Secretary, Geelong Trades Hall Council Partai Rakyat Demokratik, Indonesia Rudi Hartono, editor Berdikari Online Social Action for Change, Cambodia Solidarity, Australia