Originally published May 24 2015
212,000 Greeks appeal for humanitarian crisis relief as collapsing economy leads to bank bail-ins
by J. D. Heyes
(NaturalNews) Hundreds of thousands of Greek citizens are appealing for humanitarian assistance from the international community as the country's economic condition plunges further into the abyss.
As reported by Zero Hedge, citing statistics compiled by Keep Talking Greece, in sum around 212,000 Greeks have applied for a number of aid programs, according to the Greek government's Ministry of Labor, Social Security and Social Welfare:
-- requests relating to food subsidy 84,442
-- rent allowance 2,610
-- free of electricity reconnection & free electricity supply 1,569
-- 42,893 people requested a combination of the three Program measures
-- 59,918 people requested a combination of electricity and food aid
-- 20,529 people requested a combination of rent allowance and food
-- 936 requested free electricity and rent allowance
As seen, a huge number of Greeks are seeking food assistance, but other forms of financial help related to living expenses are also on the rise.
And the government, quite simply, is broke.
Finances in shambles
Still, as Keep Talking Greece noted, the Humanitarian Crisis Relief program "was one of the top priorities of the SYRIZA-Independent Greeks coalition government and it was pushed forwards despite the Troika-Institutions objections."
Meanwhile, a Greek default is very possible, as the small European nation's finances remain in shambles and its economy decimated by years of corruption, socialist policies and bad bank deals. As reported by Britain's The Guardian on its live update page on the afternoon of May 20, the European Central Bank agreed to extend emergency liquidity to Greece, but only 200 million euros' worth (about $222 million).
That provides Greek leaders with a bit of breathing room but not much; they still have to find a way to make a €305 million bailout payment to the International Monetary Fund by June 5, strike a new repayment deal or default.
That leaves increasingly fewer options for Greek leaders. One idea being considered, at least by some analysts, is that they may choose to raid private bank accounts as we reported Cyprus did in March 2013.
What Greek economy?
As noted by Michael Snyder at The Economic Collapse blog, the Greek government barely made its last payment on May 12. What's more, Greek banks are teetering, and the EU's powerful members are getting impatient:
The Germans and the other financial hawks in the EU are counting on these looming payment deadlines to force Greece into a deal.
Meanwhile, Greek banks also find themselves in very hot water. Many of them are almost totally out of collateral, and without outside intervention some of them could start collapsing within weeks.
In a recent interview with King World News, James Turk, one of the first men to predict that Greek deposits would be stolen, noted:
The troika of the EU, ECB and IMF have not yet pulled the plug on the Greek banks, but the following quote in the Financial Times from this weekend should be a warning to anyone who still has money on deposit in that country: "The idea of a 'Cyprus-like' presentation to Greek authorities has gained traction among some eurozone finance ministers, according to one official involved in the talks."
Could it really happen? Well, the Greek government has already confiscated "idle" cash from local Greek governments.
And what of China?
Meanwhile, there are rumblings -- and emerging evidence -- that China is positioning itself to take over as the world's reserve currency. According to an assessment by Mac Slavo at SHTFPlan.com, both China and Russia have been scooping up reserves of gold, but by far Beijing has been boosting its inventory of the precious metal far greater.
Some think that, come October, when the IMF has the second of its two annual meetings, Beijing will reveal its vast holdings of gold in an attempt to essentially take over by sheer force the world's currency reserve status -- a move that would decimate multiple governments the world over who have purchased large holdings of U.S. dollars.
China has the largest holdings of U.S. debt, but a super-stash of gold would likely negate any losses China would incur by dumping those dollars.
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