In Brief

Majority of Greeks regret joining euro

Fifty-three per cent say it was 'wrong' to join single currency - and feeling is strongest among the young

wd-eu_flag_burning.jpg

For the first time in 15 years, a majority of Greeks say they now regret joining the euro - and many believe the EU will eventually collapse.

A new poll says 53 per cent of the country think joining the single currency was "wrong", with a third favouring a return to the drachma.

Anti-euro feeling is strongest among 18 to 24-year-olds, more than half of whom are unemployed.

It is a far cry from the turn of the millennium, when roughly 70 per cent of the population supported joining the euro. Since the financial crisis that began in 2008, the country has been forced to sign a series of debilitating bailout deals with its eurozone partners, leading to years of austerity and unemployment.

Kostas Panagopoulos, head of the Alco polling company which carried out the survey, said: "The lingering financial crisis has made Greeks increasingly resentful of the EU."

He added it was the first time "such negative feelings for the euro have been recorded in Greece".

Pollsters also found 41 per cent of Greeks have serious doubts about the future of the EU, especially after the Brexit referendum, and only 40 per cent believe the bloc can avert collapse.

While Greece's mainstream centre-left and centre-right parties support EU membership, "the country's Communist party, the neo-Nazi Golden Dawn movement and hard left factions of the ruling Syriza party do not", says The Times.

According to a recent poll by Eurobarometer, people in the UK are only slightly less pessimistic about the future of the EU than Greeks. 

Infographic by statista.com for TheWeek.co.uk.

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