Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis addressed his ruling New Democracy (ND) party’s youth (ONNED) congress on Friday afternoon, telling delegates that “we’re absolutely ready to renew our ties with youth.”

Mitsotakis said his center-right government wants to consolidate the country’s status as a pillar of stability and progress in the wider region, while offering young people a chance for a better future.

He also called on ONNED’s leadership to avoid “becoming duplicates of more senior (ND) officials.”

Greece has faced several crises over the past three years but did not veer off its path, he underlined, while citing a hike in the minimum monthly wage, recognition of labor rights of couriers and a new social insurance framework.

Touching on the education sector, he said 16,000 new hirings were recorded, with the government committed to a public education and equal opportunities for all.

“The dilemma today is with libraries or sledge hammers… we know which side we’re on, and so does the large majority of Greek society,” Mitsotakis said, in referring to sharp opposition by leftist student groups to the evacuation of an occupied space at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and its transformation into a library.

The government has employed riot police to guard the construction site after unknown perpetrators smashed earlier building with sledge hammers.

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