German Chancellor Angela Merkel told Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on Friday that the country’s creditors and the Eurogroup, and not Berlin, will decide the outcome of the standoff between Greece and the European Stability Mechanism (ESM).
"This is not the place for decisions to be taken. That is in good hands with the three institutions and the Eurogroup," Merkel said during a joint press conference before their talks, adding that discussions with Tsipras are not always easy but always candid.
Greece infuriated several Eurozone members, including Germany, after announcing and legislating, a one-off Christmas supplement for low income pensioners. The ESM, which had not been consulted responded by freezing a package of debt relief measures, saying it violated the terms of the bailout deal struck in 2015.
Tsipras went to Berlin hoping to convince Berlin to to intercede in the rift. But Merkel limited herself to saying that she is open to discussions with Tsipras. ,
“The Greek prime minister's assessment of the situation will certainly play a role in our discussions."