Open Access Journal

ISSN: 2183-2463

Article | Open Access | Ahead of Print | Last Modified: 27 June 2024

Greece’s 2015 Eurozone Bailout “Renegotiation”: Beware of Greeks Bearing “Unpolitics”?

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Abstract:  In January 2015, Greece witnessed a political earthquake with the election of the populist anti-austerity/EU bailout coalition of the left-wing party SYRIZA and the far-right party ANEL. It is argued that during January–July 2015, the SYRIZA–ANEL coalition engaged in a protracted process of renegotiation of Greece’s bailout terms that were agreed between previous Greek governments and the so-called Troika (European Commission, European Central Bank, and International Monetary Fund) adopting a behaviour ruled by “unpolitics.” First, the SYRIZA–ANEL government immediately rejected formal and informal rules of EU decision-making. Second, the SYRIZA–ANEL government rejected traditional means of compromise, such as package deals and side payments. Third, when Greece’s creditors presented their last-minute bailout offer in June 2015 to avoid Greece leaving the eurozone (Grexit), the SYRIZA–ANEL government rejected the suggested solution and tried to exploit the ensuing deadlock by calling a rashly organised referendum asking Greeks to vote against the suggested deal. This period of “unpolitics” ended almost immediately after the referendum when, in a sudden and unexpected volte-face, Tsipras interpreted the referendum result as a call for compromise with the Troika and accepted the previously intolerable bailout deal.

Keywords:  bailout; eurozone; Greece; populism, SYRIZA–ANEL; Troika; unpolitics

Published:   Ahead of Print


© Sotirios Zartaloudis. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (, which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction of the work without further permission provided the original author(s) and source are credited.