Greek PM Says Debt Deal Reached with Lenders

Posted October 30th, 2012 at 1:15 pm (UTC-5)
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Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras says he has reached agreement with the country's international lenders on a new austerity plan, but his government's junior partners immediately balked at the deal.

Mr. Samaras said Tuesday that the government had completed negotiations with European Union and International Monetary Fund leaders on $17 billion in spending cuts and reforms. He said that if parliament approves the package of spending cuts next week, Greece would be able to secure another $40 billion segment in bailout funds and stay in the 17-nation euro currency bloc.

Greece says it needs the rescue funds to avoid running out of cash next month. Samaras warned that if lawmakers reject the pact, “the country will be led to chaos.”

Even after weeks of negotiations with his coalition partners, Mr. Samaras has been unable to reach agreement with them on the latest in a series of austerity measures. Greek workers have frequently taken to the streets in protest of the spending cuts.

Socialist leader Evangelos Venizelos called Mr. Samaras's announcement of a deal with Greece's creditors “unfortunate, to say the least.” The Democratic Left party says it opposes labor reforms sought by the lenders.