German Chancellor Angela Merkel has admitted that the austerity programme imposed on Greece was necessary as an example to keep the other eurozone countries in line.
Statements by both Merkel and German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble have given weight to the notion that Greece has been used as a financial experiment to keep the other Mediterranean economies in line.
Speaking to the German press Merkel said "the austerity imposed on Athens..." is "necessary to set an example to the entire eurozone." She went on to say "The question of whether Greece carries out its programme is not just a question of whether the programme succeeds or not, but rather of whether obligations will be observed in Europe in future."
The sentiment was reiterated by Schaeuble. The Telegraph reported he said although he has sympathy for the people of Greece that does not mean they don't have to put up with austerity. He said "Things are rarely fair in a crisis ... the little man suffers and the rich feather their own nests. I have really huge sympathy for the man on the street in Greece. But I cannot spare him. It is not easy to cut the minimum wage in Greece, when you think of the many people who own a yacht. "
According to Ekathimerini Schaeuble made Greece's position clear, saying "If the country wants to become competitive again, it has to sink.”
The German led experiment is taking its toll on the streets of Greece as three more suicides were reported today. Keep Talking Greece reported prevailing economic conditions resulted in three more people taking their own lives. An 36-year-old unemployed taxi-driver jumped to his death from a balcony, a 70 year-old farmer swallowed pesticide, and a 75-year-old pensioner shot himself with a rifle in the middle of a street in Athens.