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The International Monetary Fund has said it would not participate in a new bailout for the debt-stricken eurozone nation until Athens and its creditors take difficult decisions on debt relief and economic reforms.
Briefing reporters on condition of anonymity, a senior official at the Fund said that Greece needed to commit to reforms and creditors must provide debt relief - either in the form of extending loan terms or reducing the debt outright - that would allow the highly-indebted country to pay its bills over time.
"There is a need for difficult decisions on both sides... difficult decisions in Greece regarding reforms, and difficult decisions among Greece's European partners about debt relief," the IMF official said.
The official added that the IMF could only support a financial rescue program "that is comprehensive."
He also noted that detailed plans for debt relief would not come for some months during the current first stage of developing the new plan. "They want to see implementation of the policies before they are willing to discuss debt relief in the necessary details," he said, referring to the IMF board members.
Nevertheless, the IMF continues to participate in ongoing debt talks. The fund has said Greece's debts are likely to rise to 200 percent of its economic output in the next two years, a burden the fund calls unsustainable.
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