Cyprus bank levy unlikely to pass parliament -govt

NICOSIA, March 19 Tue Mar 19, 2013 2:13am EDT

NICOSIA, March 19 (Reuters) - Cyprus's parliament is unlikely to pass legislation taxing deposits which has prompted turmoil in its banking system, falling short on a condition for an international bailout, government spokesman Christos Stylianides said on Tuesday.

Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades briefed German Chancellor Angela Merkel and EU economics affairs commissioner Olli Rehn on Monday evening.

While Anastasiades said he was ready to stand by what was agreed at a euro zone finance ministers' meeting last week, he "insisted that EU partners offer some additional help," Stylianides told state radio.

Parliament was due to convene at 1600 GMT. No single party has a majority in the 56-member chamber.

Stylianides said Anastasiades was also likely to talk to Russian President Vladimir Putin during the day. A decision to tax bank deposits has far-reaching consequences not just for locals but for thousands of Europeans and Russians with business interests on the island.

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