Tsipras, Merkel agree on need to speed up Greek bailout talks

Tsipras, Merkel agree on need to speed up Greek bailout talks

In a meeting on the sidelines of a European Union leaders' summit in Malta on Friday, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and German Chancellor Angela Merkel agreed on the need to speed up negotiations on Greece's bailout review to ensure its conclusion this month, Greek government sources said.

Tsipras has been holding a series of meetings with EU leaders as part of the Greek government's aim to complete a "political negotiation" on the remaining prior actions being demanded by international creditors. According to sources, Merkel repeated to Tsipras that Greek officials must reach a compromise with representatives of Greece's international creditors.

Still pending is the role the International Monetary Fund will play in Greece's third bailout. A session of the IMF's managing board scheduled for Monday is expected to shed some light on the Fund's intentions. Sources said Merkel stressed to Tsipras the need for the IMF to be on board with the Greek program. 

Tsipras and Merkel also discussed regional issues with the German leader briefing Tsipras on her talks with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on the refugee crisis and Cyprus. Tsipras, for his part, stressed that Turkey must respect international law and that provocative actions in the Aegean undermine Greek-Turkish relations and peace and stability in the broader region.

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