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Spiegel: IMF Temporarily Recalls Staff from Athens

imfThe International Monetary Fund has temporarily recalled its staff from Athens distressed by the slow progress and lack of cooperation from the Greek side, according to Der Spiegel.
The German magazine says that a staff member said that Greek General Secretary of Fiscal Policy Nikos Theocharakis during the most recent teleconference has called the technical team of the Brussels Group — the representatives of creditors — “completely incompetent.”
The slow pace of negotiations and the attitude of the Greek team of technocrats has forced the IMF to recall its staff from Greece for a few days, the report says.
Negotiations between Greek officials and the IMF will continue after the Greek Orthodox Easter (April 12). IMF says that the two sides will meet again in mid-April since the Greek team want to interrupt talks for Easter holidays.
Der Spiegel says that Theocharakis was on the same wavelength as Greek Minister of the Interior Nikos Voutsis who stated in the same magazine that if Greece does not receive any money from its European partners and the European Central Bank by April 9,  “then we will pay salaries and pensions first, and then we will ask the IMF for a special agreement with the understanding that we will delay the payment of 450 million euros to them.”
According to Der Spiegel, the general secretary of the ministry of finance said exactly the same things Voutsis said, namely that Greece will not be able to pay the installment  to the IMF next week.
Government spokesperson Gavriil Sakellaridis stated on Thursday that the Greek government will make a timely payment to the IMF on April 9.

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