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Greece approves bailout, hurdles remain

Friday, August 14, 2015 - 01:44

Following the Greek parliament's stamp of approval of a third bailout deal, the focus now shifts to Brussels, where the multi-billion euro package will face the scrutiny of euro zone finance ministers. As Ivor Bennett reports, they could prove a much bigger stumbling block.

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Fiery and tumultuous - the bitter exchanges lasted all through the night. The most personal attacks coming from within Syriza itself. Party member Panagiotis Lafazanis. (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) REBEL SYRIZA PARTY LAWMAKER, PANAGIOTIS LAFAZANIS, SAYING: "It has a name: the annulment of democracy, the dictatorship of the euro zone over the neo-colony called Greece." Despite the rebellion, opposition support gave the government a comfortable victory. 222 voting for the 85-billion-euro bailout, 64 against. But Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras knows there are further hurdles ahead. (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) GREEK PRIME MINISTER, ALEXIS TSIPRAS, SAYING: "The real choice was between a bailout with the euro or a bailout with the drachma. Something that Germany's finance minister still today insists on, proposing it again and again so that this agreement does not go through." As it stands, Germany fears the bailout deal is insufficient. Raising doubts over debt, privatisation plans and the role of the IMF. The concerns will likely dominate discussions between euro zone finance ministers in Brussels today, where an agreement is by no means guaranteed, says IHS Global Insight's Jan Randolph. SOUNDBITE (English) JAN RANDOLPH, DIRECTOR OF SOVEREIGN RISK, IHS GLOBAL INSIGHT, SAYING: "The Germans are very important key players here, they're critical in fact, providing the larger sums from the euro zone side. So it's not a done deal today. We may have to wait until further negotiations, possibly even a bridging loan." Not exactly a new dawn but it would mean Greece can meet its next debt repayment - 3.2 billion euros to the ECB on August 20th. But beyond that, Greece's economic and political future could be in limbo, with Tsipras said to be seeking a confidence vote after the deadline.

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Greece approves bailout, hurdles remain

Friday, August 14, 2015 - 01:44