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Bundestag backs Merkel ahead of euro summit

The Local · 26 Oct 2011, 15:53

Published: 26 Oct 2011 09:31 GMT+02:00
Updated: 26 Oct 2011 15:53 GMT+02:00

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Carrying 503 of 596 possible votes, Merkel can be confident she has a strong mandate from German lawmakers.

All the parliamentary groups in the Bundestag – with the exception of the socialist Left party – had earlier signed a text giving Merkel their blessing to increase the firepower of the European Financial Stability Facility(EFSF) without EU paymaster Germany putting in more money.

At the Brussels summit later on Wednesday, the heads of the 17 eurozone countries will hold talks in a bid to thrash out a solution to what is seen as the worst economic emergency in the EU's history and a situation threatening to tip the world into recession.

Earlier in the day Merkel had said that the crisis must be resolved "now or ... never."

"The fundamental weaknesses and holes in the construction of the economic

and monetary union must either be addressed now or, I say, never," she told

German parliamentarians. "And if we address them now, then we will have seized the opportunity this crisis presents us. Otherwise we will have failed," she said.

Merkel told the Bundestag, the lower house of the German parliament, that resolving the weaknesses of the common currency could only be done with changes to European treaties.

"Where does it state that treaty changes must take a decade?" she said, adding that treaty changes always carry risks because they must approved by all 27 members of the European Union.

The brief text, obtained by news agency AFP, refers to two models being examined for bolstering the bailout fund.

One would insure jittery investors against potential future losses from the debt of shaky countries, hopefully encouraging them to continue to buy bonds from the likes of Italy, Portugal and Spain.

The second calls for aid to be co-financed by public or private investors, including foreign countries. "The two models are not mutually exclusive," the text says.

Story continues below…

Earlier on Wednesday, the China Daily newspaper reported that Beijing and other emerging powers had agreed to help the eurozone, citing a source close to EU decision makers.

"It is going to be a long day," said Merkel's spokesman Steffen Seibert, on

microblogging website Twitter.

AFP/DPA/The Local/mdm

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

15:30 October 26, 2011 by derExDeutsche
Wouldn't be the first time a German lady spent her life savings, bailing out a southern European who turned out not to be 'the one'. how many 'now or nevers' will there be? how many more 'last chances' ? How much more time and money will be lost 'saving' this relationship?

seems like this bailout will be the cold farewell kiss and taxi fare at the end of the relationship.
15:36 October 26, 2011 by delvek
There is no doubt the EU is coming to an end.

German has already printed and stockpiled for release Deutschmarks. The EU from a German viewpoint worked perfectly by allowing West German to reintergrate. Now that it is problematic (as they new it would be) and the German voter no longer interested in shoulder the debt, it is over.

I already see border personnel on several crossing points training/cleaning the windows where I would never see anyone in the past. Actually had to stop and be waived through twice coming from France into Germany over the last 3 months.
22:50 October 26, 2011 by steadyguy
No one can question Mrs Merkel or the German people over this, they have shown great patience. There has to be a time to call a halt and the time is fast approaching. Good Luck to all of us.
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