I agree wholeheartedly with all the above comments. I have lived on an island in Greece for the last eight years, where many people rely on tourism for the summer months, and Hague's ignorance and idiocy will scare many people off choosing Greece for their holidays this year. The newspaper is partly to blame for giving such prominance to his opinions, but an apology should be demanded from Hague for his quite unnecessary scare-mongering about a country which is on its knees.
Absolutely shocking behaviour!! Does he think that the enormous debt that Greece owes (through no fault of the hard-working, passionate citizens may I add) will have any chance of being repaid with mis-informed, ignorant and deluded comments such as his being broadcast all over the media?! Anyone with a brain will see that Greece's amazing islands are far from the small, contained demonstrations that have occurred in the last few weeks. I would be more wary walking around Croydon after the sensless riots than I am walking around Greece. I am going to Athens (I live in Kos) for a week in a few days and have absolutely no fear of my trip at all. A public, very much publicised and promoted apology is indeed in order!
what a joke, it shows how up to date he is with the eu, and greece and its people are the best people iv ever met, kind and friendly, i feel safer and at rest with greeks than i would with brit larger louts, all they do is reck the place.
I think that he should be made to apologies, publicly, both to the people of Greece and to those of the UK for such outlandish comments.
I am astounded that a few people have actually voted "NECESSARY" in the above poll about this issue! Anyone who did vote that Hague's advice was "necessary" is either completely deluded or just plain ignorant of the facts.
And I agree with all the other comments above mine. Well said everyone!
Its comments like this that do more harm than good! Perhaps William Hague should get his facts straight before making such negative and ridiculous comments about a country that, now more than ever, needs tourism. It is very worrying that our country is being governed by such narrow minded ill-informed politicians!
I'm German and live on the Greek island of Rhodes now for about seven years and am so pleased with the above comments! I love you all... And John Rodway is so right. UK is not a full member yet and takes no risk at all! So Mr. Haigh, stop your talking about Greece in such a badly way!
I agree with all the previous comments. As a British woman who has lived in Kos for 21 years I can say that I feel safer here than if I were back in the UK. Life goes on as normal as it has done always. People are venting their opinions which, after all, is what democracy is all about. Everyone has plenty to say about the situation but at the same time we all know that tourism is our lifeblood and we will stop at nothing to make sure every visitor receives the warmest welcome in this beautiful land of sun, fantastic beaches, archaeology, nature and the most hospitable people on this planet. Tell everyone to book their holiday in Greece this summer (if possible not all inclusive) - support a nation which is on its knees.
As someone who has been visiting Kos yearly for the last 12 years I think Haigh (and the newspaper that printed his comments) is completely out of touch with reality! The people of Greece are in need of our support and tourism is one of the main sources of income for many of the islands, to make ill informed comments that jeopordize this income can only be regarded as stupid - or malicious? It certainly wouldn't stop me going - I notice that the peaceful march in Athens, the day after the riots, to protest about the people that had caused the riots wasn't reported in the British press !
I agree with Caroline and the other contributors. This loose (I hope) comment was alarmist and irresponsible ! As it was heard by countless numbers of viewers it will have further damaged Greece's main industry, tourism, and the one which the struggling country needs to promote and expand.
Alarmist is an uderstatement! His actions were unthought about damaging towards Greece! I cannot understand why he felt the urge to make these comments! I live in Crete a the largest of the Greek Islands We also had demonstrations here but not one time did I feel threatened or even need to lock my doors (which are always open ) Greece has almost no crime the people have work hard to maintain their friendly and hospitable reputation!! No action has every taken place in the resorts even last year when we had the same demonstrations in the summer there was not one report of an attack towards any tourist reported!! As a matter of fact the Greeks themselves made tourist priorty that their vacations ontinued with minimum inconviences during the strikes extra buses where available and transport was provided where needed. Greeks are Angry but not with the tourist the people whom continue to come here and support us. Mr. Hague made unfair comments without any evidence to back it up !! May be he needs to come for a holiday and see how hospitaible the greeks really are instead of spreading rummours and making propoganda statements which are damaging to our industry!! Please come to greece we will be proud of your support and in true Greek style we plan this summer to be fun sun fun and more sun!!! Come to see what we really have to offer and Mr. Hague you are welcome too because thats what we do open our doors to everyone and share the glory and beauty of greece a land rich in culture history mythology and love!!!
There is not much else I can say, all the comments above I agree with completely. I have lived in Greece for 10 years, and feel far safer than in the UK.
I am English and moved to a small island in Greece 6 years ago and all this scaremongering is not doing the Greek tourist trade any favours, the Greeks rely on tourism and will need as many tourists as they can get to help pay back the EU so we need to let people know that Greece is a safe place to visit, the small syntagma square in Athens is smaller than Trafalgar Square in London and the riots are magnified and made to look like they are huge, the protests in London are more larger and scarier I am glad I live in Greece and feel a lot safer here than when I lived in the UK. So I think Mr Hague owes Greece an apology and encourage people to carry on visiting Greece where they will have a great time and not see any violence at all. Media coverage on violence in Greece is displayed on the news for a few minutes and does damage, but media coverage on the protests in the UK is covered for hours on end every day and yet people still visit the UK So people take no notice of the so-called "know-it-alls" and book your holiday in Greece.
William Hague was taken slightly out of context I feel....a certain newspaper picked up on his comments and exaggerated them in order to sell papers! Scaremongering? Not for those of us who live here, it outraged us all. The stupidity and irresponsibility will probably kill off the tourist season for this year, and make the fight to survive a little bit harder, another nail in the coffin!
As an english person living in Crete for the past 9 years i'm completely appalled by the comments made by Mr Hague... I (along with many other friends, both English & Greek) rely on the 6 months of tourism industry we get to not only keep myself housed, fed, watered & clothed for those 6 months but also for the 6 months of the year that are out of season & non-profitable. Mr Hague's comments may be untruthful but the damage has already been done & his comments printed for all to see... our regular customers will know them as scaremongering but any new potential visitors will more than likely be put off holidaying in Greece full stop. Well done Mr Hague, another blow to the Greek economy!
I live on the Island of Crete, and yes there are protests going on but the only ones that you see on TV is the ones in Athens... And if you watch closely you will see it is the same few being run again and again by the media. Protests in the rest of the country are in a dignified manner by a people who have been pushed to the limit of their endurance. Britain would protest too if they were forced by a non elected Government to obey such life sapping cuts. People have bills to pay here, children to feed and businesses to run. The protests are against the "Government" and the Austerity measures - not the toourists. If you want educated, unbiased comment and the TRUTH about the situation, then please go to the open group on Facebook......Europeans standing by Greeks..... It will open blinkered eyes to the TRUTH. once again ...Europeans standing by Greeks.... Thankyou in anticipation.
strange that no apology has come from Mr Haigh yet about his stupid comment
He's not the sharpest tool in the shed. Always bad comments on the EU, does everthing to kick it down. UK is not a full member yet but will have get used to it in the end.