Greece Had Courage to Take Coronavirus Action Early, PM Mitsotakis Says



Greek PM Kyriakos Mitsotakis talks to his ministers via teleconference on Tuesday. Photo Source: PM’s Office

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis on Tuesday gave high praise to the country’s authorities “for their excellent cooperation” during the coronavirus crisis.

During a cabinet meeting held via teleconference, the PM noted that “we have all proven in practice that the state works effectively for the benefit of the citizens.”

Mitsotakis added that Greece “had the courage to take action much faster than many other European countries.”

Photo Source: Prime Minister’s Office

“Our goal has always been to gain as much time as possible to enable the health system to respond as best as possible… So far it seems we have gained time, but that obviously depends on the behavior of the citizens and how they will embrace the message to stay at home,” he explained.

Mitsotakis underscored that the overwhelming majority of Greeks had responded well to the message “even before we took the final restrictive measures announced on Monday.”

Opposition calls for strengthening health service

The public health system and the people staffing it on the front lines of the fight against the coronavirus pandemic must be strengthened, SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras said on Monday, following a video conference call he had with the Federation of Hospital Doctors.

The main opposition leader said private hospitals and clinics should be requisitioned by the state, and referred extensively to the shortcomings of the public health system. Speaking of the curfew measures to fight the spread of the virus, Tsipras said “Personal responsibility does not absolve the state from its obligation for decisive action.”

“The state’s obligation is not just to introduce preventative measures and point the finger at each citizen, to tell them they are responsible for their application, but to take preventative measures to strengthen the National Health System and that of its staff,” Tsipras maintained.