News came out yesterday that all Cypriot banks will continue to be closed until at least next Tuesday and may remain closed permanently.
Last week, the European Central Bank threatened to cut the Emergency Liquidity Assistance which Cyprus had been receiving unless Cyprus’ major banks implemented legislation which would “tax” all investors who have accounts in Cypriot banks an amount up to 9.9 percent of their total deposits. The tax was rejected by the Cyprus parliament on Tuesday.
The ECB proposal led to runs on Cypriot banks and to angry protests, including from Russia’s Vladimir Putin, as many Russians have money in those banks. Cyprus is a more than thousand year-old banking center which has facilitated trade in the region for centuries, so this situation is of great interest to many people worldwide including a massive amount of shipping companies who use Cyprus as their financial center.
Nigel Farage is a British politician and leader of the UK Independence Party (UKIP) since 2010 and, since 1999, he has been a Member of the European Parliament for South East England. He came out with a scathing rebuke of the ECB’s plans.
In his first TV appearance since the Cypriot wealth tax was announced, he stated that in all his years and all his experience of the desperation of the European Union’s leadership “never did [he] think they would resort to stealing money from people’s savings accounts.”