FRANKFURT (Reuters) - European Central Bank policymaker Jens Weidmann rejected Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis's characterisation on Thursday of ECB policy towards Athens as "asphyxiating toward our government."
"You have to separate cause and effect," Weidmann, who is also chief of Germany's Bundesbank, replied when asked about the Greek finance minister's comment. "It's not because of the ECB that the Greek government has no access to markets.
"It's not because of the ECB that the payment of aid was halted," Weidmann told a news conference after presenting the Bundesbank's 2014 results.
"We have rules that we have to stick with, and these rules are designed to safeguard euro zone monetary policy."
Reporting by Maria Sheahan and Paul Carrel; Editing by Janet Lawrence