Greece has been facing a well-documented demographic problem since the 1980s, but it was the financial crisis that has given the most decisive blow to the country’s population. Accordign to the Hellenic Statistic Agency (ELSTAT), Greece’s population has decreased by around 355,000 and the downward trend is leading to worrisome predictions. Unless drastic measures are taken, the country’s population will fall under 10 million by 2050 and drop to 7.2 million by 2080.

The phenomenon is the subject of a recently released study, by Ira-Emke Poulopoulos, a Paris University professor, member of the New York Academy of Sciences and vice-president of the Hellenic Society for Demographic Studies. Titled “The Greek Population Under Siege the study “aims to prove that during the crisis large sections of the Greek population have been ‘persecuted,’ that is systematically subjected to discomforts that have led to or will end in the future with their departure from Greece, their family, their work, their friends, even life,” the author told the state-run ANA-MPA news agency.