ROME (Reuters) - European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso has added his voice to warnings that Greece could be forced to leave the euro if it did not stick to its agreements with other members of the currency bloc.
“I have much respect for Greek democracy and of course the Greek parliament, but I also have to respect the other 16 parliaments that approved the programme,” Barroso said in an interview with Italian news channel SkyTG24 television on Thursday.
“So of course, the agreements have to be respected and if they are not respected it means that the conditions do not exist to continue with a country that does not respect the agreements,” he said.
Asked whether his comments meant that Greece could be forced out of the single currency, he said no member of any organisation could continue if it did not stick to the agreed rules.
“Look, if a member of a club, I don’t want to talk about a particular country, but if a member of a club does not respect the rules, it’s better that it leaves the club, and this is true for any organisation or institution or any project.”
Barroso made the comments in English but his words could not be heard over an Italian translation.
Reporting By James Mackenzie; Editing by Susan Fenton