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September 21, 2012

Greek Austerity Talks With Creditors Stall Again

by VOA News

Greece's negotiations with its international creditors over more austerity budget-cutting remain unresolved.

Negotiators for the International Monetary Fund, the European Union and the European Central Bank are meeting again Friday with Greek officials, but then plan to leave Athens for a week. The lenders are demanding that the Greek government impose more wage and pension cuts before they will release the next round of bailout funds to the government to keep it from defaulting on its financial obligations.

After several rounds of budget-cutting by the debt-ridden Greek government, the creditors are seeking an additional $15 billion in austerity measures over the next two years. But the Greek populace has grown angry at the demands, leading to frequent street protests.

Leaders of Greece's coalition government have been unable to reach an agreement among themselves on what cuts to make, or to satisfy the country's lenders. A junior partner in the coalition, Democratic Left leader Fotis Kouvelis, says the lenders have to realize the impact of the budget-cutting on Greece.

"The negotiations continue," he said. "The troika must stop attacking Greek society. It must understand that the society has certain limits, as does the functioning of the society, which also has limits.''


Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.