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Merkel's "referendum comment" irks Greeks

Saturday, May 19, 2012 - 01:39

May 19 - Greeks are upset with a report that German Chancellor Angela Merkel suggested the country hold a referendum on euro zone membership. Andrew Raven reports.

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Another day, another controversy in Greece. Newspapers here loudly trumpet a report that German Chancellor Angela Merkel suggested the debt-stricken country hold a referendum on staying in the euro zone. The report comes as Greece struggles to implement a series of austerity measures backed by Berlin. While Germany has denied broaching the idea of a referendum, the story upset many here in Athens. This man says Merkel should be "ashamed" of the suggestion. And this woman doesn't think a referendum will help Greece, already suffering from political paralysis following inconclusive elections earlier this month. Meanwhile, British Finance Minister George Osborne said Saturday the continent's debt debacle risks spiralling out of control. (SOUNDBITE) (English) BRITISH FINANCE MINISTER GEORGE OSBORNE SAYING: "As the storms of the euro zone crisis gather again, there is a risk that some of the good work of the last 20 years in building a stable financial sector and creating jobs and prosperity might unwind." Greeks will head back to the polls in mid-June for fresh parliamentary elections. EU leaders have warned that if an anti-bailout party wins, the country will have to leave the euro. Leaders of the G8, including the Europeans, are discussing the euro crisis at a summit hosted this weekend by U.S. President Barack Obama. Andrew Raven, Reuters

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Merkel's "referendum comment" irks Greeks

Saturday, May 19, 2012 - 01:39