While the European Union said that Greece, of which the economy has crumbled due to a debt crisis, will soon receive a first tranche of a massive EU/IMF loan to help it back on its feet, one of the country's ministers was fired due to a tax scandal.
"The first tranche of the financial assistance for Greece is being transferred today... and the IMF will do its part in parallel," EU Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner Olli Rehn was quoted by BBC News. "This is altogether €20 billion, out of which €14.5 billion are from euro area member states and € 5.5 billion euros are from the IMF," the commissioner added.
Rehn praised the measures taken by Greece and also Spain and Portugal - two other countries in financial difficulties.
The bail-out package for Greece was agreed earlier this month, and comes after a period of social, political and economic turmoil. Due to the crisis the Euro has plummeted against the dollar to the lowest level in 2006. This devaluation is predominantly linked to Greece's debt crisis and the fear that other countries like Spain and Portugal might follow.
Yesterday, the Euzone's finance ministers have underlined that the euro was a credible and valuable currency, despite the significant slide against the dollar.
The EU's commitment to Greece came the same day as the dismissal of Greece's Deputy Tourism Minister Angela Gerekou. earlier this month a newspaper revealed how her husband, a popular singer, owed more than €5 million in unpaid taxes and fines. The real problem was that Gerekou, a political protegee of Prime Minister George Papandreou, filed joint tax declarations with her husband for the past years.