Thursday, May 10, 2012

Greece's radical Left leader Alexis Tsipras plots course to tear up bailout deal

Radical left leader Alexis Tsipras failed last night in his effort to form an anti-bailout coalition in Greece, as European leaders debated withholding loan payments in response to political posturing in Athens. A final effort to agree a unity government from pro-European parties gets underway today with little likelihood of success, an outcome that would send Greeks back to the polls.

After discussions about postponing the latest tranche of aid to Athens from the European Financial Stability Fund, eurozone finance ministers approved the release of €4.2bn last night. But as concerns mounted over Greek leftists' statements that the country should renege on its debts, they said the final €1bn of the payment would be held back, as it was "not needed before June and will be disbursed depending on the financing needs of Greece".

The German Foreign Minister, Guido Westerwelle, had earlier insisted Greece would receive no more aid unless it continued to enact the agreed economic reforms and acknowledged that it could end up leaving the eurozone if it failed to comply. Read More