No guarantees that Greek bailout will work: Kouchner

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French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner on Sunday warned there were no guarantees a massive bailout for Greece would be enough to prevent fallout from spreading to the eurozone.

Kouchner argued however that the financial aid worth about 120 billion euros (160 billion dollars) over the next three years was essential to defend the euro and recent gains made in building Europe.

"No one can guarantee anything, especially in this situation when the markets are permanently attacking," Kouchner said when asked in an interview on Europe 1 radio whether the aid would be enough to prevent eurozone contagion.

Greece on Sunday agreed to sweeping spending cuts to secure billions of euros in aid from the International Monetary Fund and the European Union, a day after demonstrators took to the streets to protest the austerity measures.

"We are fighting for Europe and for the euro. The euro is also our currency and in a way, we are fighting for ourselves and to avoid that this will happen to us," said Kouchner.

"We are not at all in the same economic situation, not at all," he added.

Even Spain and Portugal, whose credit rating was downgraded by Standard and Poor's last week over their debt, "do not at all have the same problems as Greece", Kouchner argued.

The French National Assembly is scheduled to vote late Monday or Tuesday on extending loans of up to 6.3 billion euros -- of which 3.9 billion would be unlocked this year -- to help Greece meet its debt refinancing obligations.

© 2010 AFP

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