EU referendum: Former Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis says UK will only vote to stay in the EU out of fear of the unknown

James Nickerson
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Varoufakis hit out at the "toxic macroeconomic management of a Brussels-Frankfurt establishment" (Source: Getty)

While he hopes it is not, former Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis fears that "we may be experiencing the European Union's disintegration".

Writing in Quora, Varoufakis said that on a political level the disintegration of Europe is seen everywhere, citing the British referendum as one example.

"At the political level, on multiple issues, the EU's disintegration is everywhere to be seen. Eastern European governments openly declare their opposition to the very principle of solidarity" while "the British electorate is alienated from Brussels (and will vote to stay in only out of fear of the unknown)," he said.

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Aside from this, Varoufakis listed the breakdown of Schengen and the EU's inability to come to terms with what is "after all, a mild refugee crisis" as evidence of disintegration.

"Schengen has already been suspended and is under enormous strain as the forces of xenophobia, ultra-nationalism and plain paranoia are taking over."

But Varoufakis also used the opportunity to hit out at the "toxic macroeconomic management of a Brussels establishment."

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Citing the collapse of the Soviet Union, he said that when a "non-viable economic architecture is maintained through authoritarianism and brute political will, its collapse is postponed. But when it comes it is very fast and very painful. I hope that Europeans manage to democratise the EU before we have a repeat performance".

His comments come on the same week that Prime Minister David Cameron is set to meet his European counterparts in the hope of reaching an agreement on his EU draft reform proposals. He is today in Paris to try and garner the support of French President Francois Hollande.

They also come as Bosnia and Herzegovina made a formal application to join the EU.

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