``The swing in Greece's fiscal position from a large primary deficit to a surplus was almost unprecedented, but the demand that the country achieve a primary surplus of 4.5% of GDP was unconscionable. Unfortunately, at the time that the "troika" -- the European commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund -- first included this irresponsible demand in the international financial programme for Greece, the country's authorities had no choice but to accede to it.''

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