Merkel Reins In Talk of Greek Exit

German chancellor says efforts to resolve Europe’s debt crisis are at ‘decisive phase.’

Chancellor Angela Merkel told officials in her coalition calling for a Greek exit from the euro to “weigh their words,” as she signaled a renewed determination to keep the single currency intact.

Asked about comments by a party leader calling for Greece to leave the 17-nation currency, Merkel told ARD television that such comments were damaging as crisis fighting reaches a “decisive phase.” Alexander Dobrindt, general secretary of the governing Bavarian Christian Social Union, told Bild newspaper that Greece wouldn’t be part of the euro in 2013.

‘Toxic Statements’

Such “toxic statements, from wherever they come, can only do damage,” Samaras said as he stood alongside Merkel in Berlin on Aug. 24. “Is there any businessman who will make an investment in euros to get it back in drachmas? The recovery of the economy is of critical importance if we are to achieve our goals.”

Debt Writedowns

Options raised in Germany in recent weeks include front-loading aid payments to Greece to help it over liquidity hurdles, lowering the interest rate or extending maturities on loans, and pushing for a second debt writedown, this time focusing on bonds held by public institutions, notably the ECB.

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