Cohn-Bendit urges lifting of bank privacy to catch untaxed cash from Greece

The head of the European Greens Daniel Cohn-Bendit has called for the lifting of bank privacy laws in Europe so as to track down "the 200 to 300 billion euro that are estimated to have been smuggled by Greeks abroad" and to fight tax evasion in Greece. The co-president of the European Greens-European Free Alliance group in the European Parliament made the statements during an interview broadcast by Austrian state radio on Tuesday. The German politician stressed that Greece had to be helped and warned that Europe could not ask a country to do the impossible, to reduce its deficit from 10 percent to 6 percent in a year. He underlined that no country could achieve this, not even Germany, and said that negotiations with Greece should be realistic so that the reforms could be accepted by society.

    He also emphasised the need for major changes, including a reduction of Greece's massive spending on defence relative to its GDP and a reduction in Greece's dependency on imported fossil fuels and greater use of solar energy.

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