IMF chief urges Europe to stick by Greek bailout deal

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IMF chief Christine Lagarde urged European leaders on Wednesday to stick by their debt crisis plan despite Greece's plans to hold a referendum on the bailout deal.

Lagarde said what matters "is the resilience and the determination of the European partners... to take the matter forward to implement the agreement that has been agreed on the 27th of October" on measures to rescue Greece.

Last week Europe cobbled together a deal to wipe 100 billion euros off Greece's debt, strengthen banks and double the firepower of its bailout fund, but the Greek referendum threw this into question.

"Of course there are hiccups on the road, sometimes major hiccups," said Lagarde.

Lagarde and European leaders were meeting with Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou on Wednesday to try to find a way out of the crisis.

The IMF has yet to give the green light on releasing 8.0 billion euros in rescue loans that Greece needs to avoid defaulting on its debts within weeks.

European officials have said those loans are like on ice until it becomes clear whether Greece will support the bailout package.

© 2011 AFP

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