[BERLIN] Germany will negotiate with Athens "until the last minute", a senior ally of German Chancellor Angela Merkel told Germany's Inforadio on Friday, but stressed that Greece must be prepared to carry out reforms.
Peter Altmaier, Merkel's chief of staff, said he still believed it was possible that Athens and its international lenders could reach a solution to Greece's debt crisis.
He said all EU member states wanted to hold the euro together, but stressed the need for Greece to present sensible reforms. He said Germany, the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund all agreed on this.
Mr Altmaier said there was agreement and hope "that Greece ... will finally behave like other countries such as Spain, Portugal and Ireland did in the past."