Austrian foreign minister takes hard line on Greek aid: paper

Reuters News
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Posted: Sep 01, 2012 10:23 AM
Austrian foreign minister takes hard line on Greek aid: paper

VIENNA (Reuters) - Austrian Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger opposes giving hard-pressed Greece more leeway to meet terms of an international bailout, he told a newspaper.

"I favour (the stance) that the Greeks now have to respect adamantly the conditions negotiated with the EU, that the Troika reviews this, and that Greece gets more money only if it really sticks to the agreed path of reform, without extensions," he told the Oesterreich daily.

He was referring in the interview published on the paper's website on Saturday to the European Union, European Commission and the International Monetary Fund, which are in the process of reviewing how well Athens is meeting conditions of its rescue.

Spindelegger, who is head of the conservative People's Party and deputy chancellor in a coalition with Social Democrats, has been taking an increasing hard line on euro zone laggards as polls show eurosceptic sentiment on the rise ahead of parliamentary elections due next year.

The Social Democrats under Chancellor Werner Faymann have also urged Greece to honor its commitments but have been more open to showing some leniency to Athens.

(Reporting by Michael Shields; Editing by Mark Potter)