Greek finance minister resigns

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Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis attends a Eurozone finance ministers emergency meeting on the situation in Greece in Brussels, Belgium, June 27, 2015. [Xinhua/Ye Pingfan]

Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis announced his resignation on Monday, citing a preference by his countries' creditors for not having him in future negotiations.

The decision came just hours after the results of Sunday's referendum on an austerity-driven bailout proposal were proclaimed. Six out of ten Greek voters said "No."

"The referendum of 5th July will stay in history as a unique moment when a small European nation rose up against debt-bondage," Varoufakis, a staunch advocate of the "No" vote, said in a press release.

"Like all struggles for democratic rights, so too this historic rejection of the Eurogroup's 25th June ultimatum comes with a large price tag attached," added the statement.

Varoufakis noted that the "No" vote should be turned immediately into a "Yes" to a proper resolution -- an agreement that involves debt restructuring, less austerity, redistribution in favor of the needy, and real reforms.

"Soon after the announcement of the referendum results, I was made aware of a certain 'preference' by some Eurogroup participants, and assorted 'partners' for my ... 'absence' from its meetings," he said, adding that Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras judged the idea "to be potentially helpful to him in reaching an agreement."

"For this reason, I am leaving the Ministry of Finance today," Varoufakis said. "I consider it my duty to help Alexis Tsipras exploit, as he sees fit, the capital that the Greek people granted us through yesterday's referendum."


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