EU deal 'sole way' to solve Greek debt problem: Sarkozy

1st November 2011, Comments 0 comments

The accord struck at an EU summit last week is the "sole possible way" to resolve Greece's debt problems, French President Nicolas Sarkozy said on Tuesday.

"Yesterday the Greek prime minister took the initiative to announce a referendum," Sarkozy said at the end of an inter-ministerial meeting. "This initiative surprised all of Europe."

"France reminds everyone that the accord adopted last Thursday unanimously by the 17 member-states of the eurozone is the sole possible way to resolve Greece's debt problems."

"Giving people a voice is always legitimate, but the solidarity of all the eurozone countries is not possible unless each one agrees to measures deemed necessary," he said.

"That is why France and Germany took the initiative to gather tomorrow, before the opening of the G20 summit, all of European institutions as well as the International Monetary Fund to examine along with the Greek prime minister the conditions under which the engagements undertaken will be kept."

An earlier Franco-German statement said that the emergency meeting in Cannes was agreed during a phone call between Sarkozy and Chancellor Angela Merkel to discuss Greece's call for a referendum on a euro debt rescue package agreed at an EU summit last week.

The Greek call sent stock markets around the world tumbling amid uncertainty over banks' exposure to euro debt in the event of a default.

Sarkozy is to hold a summit of the Group of 20 industrialised nations in the Mediterranean city of Cannes on Thursday and Friday.

"France and Germany are determined to ensure with their European partners the full implementation, as quickly as possible, of decisions taken by the summit, which today are more necessary than ever," the statement said.

"France and Germany are convinced that this agreement will allow Greece to return to sustainable growth.

"France and Germany would like, in consultation with their European partners and the IMF, for a roadmap to be drawn up quickly to ensure the deal's application," it said.

© 2011 AFP

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