France’s President Nicolas Sarkozy and Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel have revealed there was some tough talking during an emergency meeting with the Greek premier.
George Papandreou was summoned to the French city of Cannes ahead of the G20 summit to explain his surprise announcement that he would put last months EU bailout deal to a referendum.
President Nicholas Sarkozy said:
“Europeans and the IMF can not consider the sixth tranche of the aid program until Greece has adopted the whole package (agreed on) October 27 and until the uncertainty of the outcome of the referendum has been lifted.”
Sarkozy also added that any referendum should be on whether Greece stays in the euro zone or leaves and not specifically on the bail out package
Merkel was putting the single currency first.
“The Euro as a whole has to stabilise. We prefer to achieve this with Greece than without Greece. But the task of preserving the Euro as a strong currency is our most important task,” said the German leader.
Several of Greece’s European partners said they’d been dismayed at the fact the Greek leader took his unilateral action without consulting then and that for the first time Greece leaving the euro zone was now no longer a taboo subject