Banks should not be forced in Greek crisis: Dutch top banker

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Dutch private banks should not be forced to contribute to a second Greek bailout, the country's central bank governor said Saturday, echoing sentiments by the European central bank's top executive.

"We have to support Greece, we have to get it back on track," Dutch central bank president Nout Wellink said.

"But you cannot force banks, they have to do it out of their own will," Wellink told Dutch public radio.

During the hour-long discussion, Wellink said he supported European Central Bank chief Jean-Claude Trichet's position on the Greek debt crisis.

Europe's top banking executive this week warned of dangers of a "selective default" treating different creditors, public and private, differently.

A spokesman for Moody's on Saturday stressed the rating agency would consider Greece to be defaulting on its debt obligations if any such rescheduling appeared to be forced on private banks, rather than strictly voluntarily.

Last year Dutch lawmakers overwhelmingly approved the Netherlands' contribution to the multi-billion-euro Greek aid package, but plans to contribute to a second bailout have been met by opposition, both from the public and the Dutch ruling coalition's right-wing alliance partner.

The European Central Bank has until the end of the month to decide a second bailout for Greece but remains divided over the role of the private sector.

© 2011 AFP

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