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Greece says sticking to "red lines", wants concessions from lenders
[ATHENS] Greece's government is sticking to its non-negotiable "red lines" on labour and pension issues and expects its EU and IMF creditors to also make concessions to reach a deal, the government spokesman said on Thursday. "There should not be an expectation on the part of institutions...that the government will back down on everything," Gabriel Sakellaridis told a news conference. "When you negotiate, there should be mutual concessions." Athens, for example, was not emphasising the crucial issue of debt relief in the talks to help facilitate a deal, he said. "We won't go beyond the limits of our red lines," he said."It's clear that we cannot cut pensions." Athens is running out of cash but has yet to reach a deal with its lenders, who have ruled out an agreement by Monday's meeting of euro zone ministers.
Greece's government is hoping that meeting will acknowledge the country's position and would allow the European Central Bank to relax liquidity restrictions so that a cash crunch is eased, he said.
Asked about a May 12 payment to the IMF that has been in doubt, Mr Sakellaridis said Athens aims to repay all its financial obligations.