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Greece 'optimistic' new debt loan proposal will please all ATHENS: Greece is due to make a formal request for a loan extension from eurozone finance ministers Thursday, declaring itself "optimistic" about a compromise plan despite EU scepticism and the spectre of a catastrophic "Grexit".Athens was expected to send a letter to Jeroen Dijsselbloem, head of the Eurogroup of EU finance ministers, to request an extension of up to six months on its European loan agreement that would sidestep the duties of a full-blown bailout.Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis insisted a deal was still possible even after a firm preemptive "nein" from EU paymaster Germany to its planned offer."We are on the right path, I am optimistic it will end well tomorrow or the next day," Varoufakis told reporters on Wednesday."Our proposition will be written in such a way that it will cover both the demands of the Greek side and the head of the Eurogroup," he said.Europe and Greece ...

Greece expected to seek loan extension from sceptical euro zone ATHENS/BRUSSELS: Greece is expected to ask on Thursday for an extension to its "loan agreement" with the euro zone as it faces running out of cash within weeks, but it must overcome resistance from sceptical partners led by Germany.With Greece's bailout programme due to expire in little more than a week, the government of leftist Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras urgently needs to secure a financial lifeline to keep the country afloat beyond late next month.Financial ...
Kerry calls on Russian FM to stop Ukraine attacks WASHINGTON: US Secretary of State John Kerry called his Russian counterpart Wednesday to urge him to stop separatist attacks on a strategic Ukrainian town and respect a fragile ceasefire.Despite the fall of the eastern town of Debaltseve to pro-Russian rebels after a fierce assault, US officials said the truce brokered just last week was not yet dead.Kerry spoke early Wednesday with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and pressed him "to stop Russian and separatist attacks ...
Ukraine president calls for international peacekeepers KIEV: Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko on Wednesday called for a UN-mandated peacekeeping force to monitor a tattered ceasefire deal in east Ukraine."We see the best format would be a police mission from the European Union. We are sure this would be the most effective and best guarantee for security," Poroshenko said at the start of a meeting with security chiefs. Poroshenko said that he hoped an official decision to invite the international contingent would be ...
EU urges 'common ground' in Greece debt battle BRUSSELS: The EU on Wednesday said efforts were under way to forge a compromise between Athens and its sceptical eurozone partners on extending Greece's bailout agreement."We are now working to see if it is possible to find a common ground for an extension of the current programme," said Valdis Dombrovskis, the European Commission's vice president for the euro. "The best way forward is to extend the existing programme with its conditionality," he told a press ...
Greece's Tsipras attacks sanctions on Russia BERLIN: Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras told Germany's Stern magazine an economic war with Russia was in no-one's interests and that imposing sanctions on Moscow over the crisis in Ukraine was "hypocritical" "If you want to punish Russia, you need to punish all the countries where Russian multi-billionaires have invested their assets," he told Stern in an interview released on Wednesday. "I want the EU to speak with one voice.. But Greece is also suffering ...
British unemployment drops as elections approach LONDON: Britain's unemployment rate has descended to a new six-year low of 5.7 percent while growth in wages outpaced inflation, official data showed Wednesday, offering the government a lift before May elections.The jobless rate for October-December was down from 5.8 percent for the three months to the end of November, its lowest level August 2008, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said in a statement.The rate is currently the third lowest in the European Union, ...


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WeeklyFebruary 26, 2015
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