“I have been accused of being very generous with Greece.” These were the remarks of former German finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble in an interview with Deutsche Welle.
Schaeuble had been the finance minister of Germany—Greece’s biggest lender—during the crucial years of the Greek economic crisis. The German politician had been accused by Greeks as imposing harsh austerity measures on the already burdened people of Greece.
Asked to comment on Italy and the ongoing controversy between the European Commission and the Italian government on the country’s budget, Schaeuble drew a parallel with Greece. The Commission rejected Italy’s 2019 budget, generating fears about the future of the eurozone.
“I would be delighted if all those who are speaking about Italy today had supported me when we were trying to explain to the Greeks that they must respect the rules,” stated the ex-minister.
Schaeuble also rejected accusations that he had been too hard on Greece in the past.
“No. The accusation in my parliament was that I was very generous to Greece. And that was true because the Greeks did not follow the rules. But we did all that in the right way,” said Schaeuble.
Did Wolfgang Schäuble go too far with #Greece when he was Germany’s finance minister?
— DW Conflict Zone (@dw_conflictzone) October 31, 2018