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Greece's Tsipras in crunch debt talks with creditors

Update: June, 25/2015 - 11:04
A protester shouts slogans during a pro-European demonstration in front of the Greek parliament in Athens on June 22, 2015. AFP/VNA Photo

BRUSSELS – Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras will continue marathon talks with creditors in Brussels today to thrash out a debt deal to save Athens from default, despite having lashed out at lenders for rejecting his reform plans.

Tsipras held a two-hour late-night meeting with the heads of the European Commission, International Monetary Fund and European Central Bank, Greece's main bailout monitors, officials said, after seven hours of discussions earlier on Wednesday failed to produce a breakthrough.

The parties agreed to resume the talks at 0700GMT Thursday morning in hopes of finalising a deal in time to present it at a meeting of eurozone finance ministers later in the day.

The 19 ministers from the single currency bloc halted their own talks on releasing further financial aid on Wednesday, saying they did not have enough information to work through the night as planned and that they would start again at 1100GMT on Thursday.

Time is running out, with Athens needing the extra bailout cash to avoid defaulting on a huge International Monetary Fund payment on June 30, which could send it crashing out of the eurozone with potentially seismic effects for the world economy.

A European source said there was "hope of an agreement between the (creditor) institutions and Greek authorities" from the talks between Tsipras and the EU-IMF.

"We have not reached agreement yet, but we are determined to continue our work towards doing what is necessary," Jeroen Dijsselbloem, head of the Eurogroup of finance ministers from the 19-country currency union, told reporters after the talks broke up after around one hour.

Eurozone stock markets fell at close, weighed down by renewed concerns about a deal, with Frankfurt dropping 0.62 per cent, Paris sliding 0.24 per cent, Madrid 0.82 per cent lower, Milan down 0.16 per cent and Greece losing 1.77 per cent. -- AFP 

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