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European Leaders Struggle to Resolve Debt Crisis at Summit

Luxembourg's Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker (L), France's President Nicolas Sarkozy (C) and Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel (R) attend an European Union summit in Brussels, October 26, 2011.
Luxembourg's Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker (L), France's President Nicolas Sarkozy (C) and Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel (R) attend an European Union summit in Brussels, October 26, 2011.
Lisa Bryant

European Union leaders are meeting in a crunch summit Wednesday to find a lasting solution to the spreading eurozone debt crisis.

The leaders got a boost earlier in the day when German lawmakers approved a proposal to strengthen the EU's bailout fund. Analysts say that is one essential step in solving the crisis.

Heading into the talks in Brussels, German Chancellor Angela Merkel urged fellow heads of state to reach an accord.

Merkel said the EU leaders need to resolve a series of sticking points and work on moving forward.

One is a second bailout for debt-strapped Greece, whose financial woes helped trigger the larger eurozone problems.

Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou said it is vital not only to save the euro currency but European ideals.

"Now is the time for the European leadership collectively to take decisions, to end the uncertainty and the crisis, turn the page and make sure we make a big step forward for the better future, prosperity and security of our peoples in Europe," he said.

With the risk of Europe's financial woes spreading overseas, the leaders are facing growing pressure for speedy and strong action. German and French leaders have vowed to reach a sustainable solution before next week's summit of the Group of 20 leading economies summit in France.

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