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Tsipras 'Hoping German Coalition Will Agree Debt Relief'

Greek PM Alexis Tsipras (L) with German Social Democrat leader Martin Schulz (R) (file photo)

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras wants to see a grand coalition between Germany’s center-left and center-right parties which would support debt relief for Athens.
Germany’s parties have been locked in talks since an inconclusive federal election in September.
“Tsipras wants a grand coalition in Berlin,” German newspaper Handelsblatt has reported, adding:
“No other foreign politician is so eager for [SPD leader] Martin Schulz to join the next German government as the Greek prime minister is. Alexis Tsipras is expecting Greek debt relief from a big coalition.”
It claims Tsipras is hoping a German Social Democrat finance minister will be more open to easing austerity but that debt relief remains his main target.
Although the Eurogroup has said it will look into such an idea, without an administration in Berlin its room to enact recommendations is limited.
Handelsblatt also says that the Greek prime minister hopes for a clear exit from the third bailout program. For that, however, he needs the political support of other European leaders.
“At the moment, we are seeing an impressive reversal of roles: In early 2015, then European Parliament President Martin Schultz urged the then new Greek prime minister to more realistic political approaches.
“Now, however, Tsipras is the one who, with his suggestions, by telephone or SMS, urges Martin Schulz to say ‘yes’ to the big coalition. In addition to French President Emmanuel Macron, Martin Schulz is now the most important ally for the Greek prime minister.”

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