Merkel, Hollande urge Greek talks accelerate for end-May deal

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande said that efforts to resolve the standoff over Greek financing need to speed up.

Addressing a joint press conference in Berlin, Merkel said that an accord must be struck with Greece by the end of this month since its current funding package expires at the end of June. She and Hollande are ready to meet with Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras during a summit of European Union leaders in Latvia that begins May 21, she said.

“We do expect that decisive progress now be made in the relevant forums, particularly in the so-called Brussels Group,” comprising officials of the institutions formerly known as the troika and Greek representatives, she said. “We are all very interested” in meeting the end of May deadline and will impress that on Tsipras in the Latvian capital, Riga.

Greece “has needs that can’t wait,” Hollande told reporters.


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