German press divided over Greek plan and Merkel's role

22nd July 2011, Comments 0 comments

German media were divided on Friday in reacting to decisions from an emergency eurozone summit on a new rescue for Greece, as much over what was decided as on the role of Chancellor Angela Merkel.

The left-of-centre Frankfurter Rundschau felt that "Europe got a grip" on the debt problem, and centre-left Berliner Zeitung saw "the birth of a European Monetary Fund."

Die Welt, a conservative daily, was much less enthusiastic, running a headline that said "another rescue package."

For the economic daily Financial Times Deutschland, "Europe can applaud, at least with one hand."

The FTD forecast a "hot" time in the Fall however, when decisions taken in Brussels on Thursday have to be put into action.

But at least "no one can question the system any longer," the left-of-centre Sueddeutsche Zeitung wrote.

"Since the Spring, the European Union has decided on an impressive series of reforms, which would never have seen the light of day had it not been for the pressure the problems created," it added.

Meanwhile Merkel, who has been criticised for delaying the process, received rare commendation from the left-of-centre tageszeitung which said on its front page that "Merkel has made her mark on the euro."

Succeeding in getting private investors to sign on to the rescue plan was "her success," the FTD and Die Welt added.

For the Berliner Zeitung however, in recent months, "every one of the chancellor's positions in the euro crisis has been a good counter indicator of what was later decided."

The daily pointed in particular to a greater assumption of collective responsibility for eurozone members debts.

Finally, the tabloid Bild, the highest circulation newspaper in Germany, claimed victory for its forecast that Greece would eventually default on its debt.

"Greece's default is official: Yesterday what Bild has written for a long time happened," the daily said.

© 2011 AFP

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