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Greece, creditors stick to hard line

Tuesday, June 16, 2015 - 02:08

One in two economists see a Greek default happening, according to a new Reuters poll, but both Greece and its creditors show little sign of making concessions over debt, ahead of a euro zone finance ministers' meeting on Thursday. David Pollard reports.

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Is crisis fatigue setting in? Even the indefatigable German chancellor, Angela Merkel, appeared weary of the Greek saga as she made her latest remarks. (SOUNDBITE) (German) GERMAN CHANCELLOR, ANGELA MERKEL, SAYING: "Unfortunately, there is little new to report. That is why we agreed in our talks that we will focus on the meeting of finance ministers on Thursday evening.'' But Greek opposition leaders are trying to breathe new life into a deadlocked situation. First, the leader of the Potami Party told the press in Athens how he'd appealed in a meeting with prime minister, Alexis Tsipras. Pasok Party leader Fofi Genimata saying she'd also called for a deal with creditors. (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) PASOK PARTY LEADER, FOFI GENIMATA, SAYING: "A clash with lenders is not a solution, it's a disaster - for the workers, the pensioners, the farmers, small-sized businesses, women, the new generation." Publicly, Tsipras is defiant - in his latest remarks, accusing Greece's creditors of seeking to humiliate his country. But faced with a backlash from within his Syriza Party over possible concessions to lenders, he could well need the support of Potami and Pasok to sell - and vote through - a deal at home. Greece is heading for default on a 1.6 billion euro debt repayment on June 30 unless it receives fresh funds. After the collapse of talks between the two sides at the weekend, banks reported 400 million euros of funds flowed out of the country on Monday. London Capital Group's head analyst, Brenda Kelly. (SOUNDBITE) (English) BRENDA KELLY, HEAD ANALYST, LONDON CAPITAL GROUP, SAYING: ''We are coming to the end of the wire for Greece at the moment, and certainly we're waiting for somebody, whether it's Greece or the creditors to capitulate at this particular point. I think given the point that we have seen such a massive flow of deposits out of Greece, there is very little leverage left and I do feel it's more than likely that Greece will be the first to blink.'' With euro zone finance ministers due to meet on Thursday to review the stalled debt talks, EU officials deny reports that an emergency summit of euro zone leaders is planned for next Sunday. Tsipras is thought to be going ahead with a planned visit to Russia from Thursday. So far there's been no hint he'll find a solution to Greece's cash problems there.

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Greece, creditors stick to hard line

Tuesday, June 16, 2015 - 02:08