Greece says ECB won't let its banks collapse

As a result, the European Central Bank's governing council decided to provide more emergency credit for Greece's banks to help them cope with the situation. The meeting was announced by the newly appointed Finnish Finance Minister, Alexander Stubb, who set clear expectations for the talks.

ATHENS • Greeks pulled more than 1 billion euros out of their banks in a single day, banking sources said on Friday, as the country edged closer to the brink of default despite upbeat remarks from Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras.

On 19 June, the ECB approved a €1.1bn (£780m, $1.25bn) helpline to Greece by extending its Emergency Liquidity Assistance (ELA) following a request from the Bank of Greece.

"We will negotiate until the last minute," Mr Altmaier told Inforadio, adding that the German government didn’t want "the people in Greece to be disadvantaged because their government possibly didn’t recognise in time that the hour has come".

Eurozone leaders will hold an emergency summit on Monday to try to avert a Greek default.

That prospect appeared to be fuelling the rising number of Greek savers withdrawing money from national banks.

With the health of Greek lenders increasingly in peril, one executive board member of the European Central Bank questioned on Thursday whether Greek banks would be able to open next week.

Some media outlets are reporting that the latest round of liquidity funds from the ECB is equal to about 3 billion euros, while others report that the number is lower and more short-term.

A meeting was scheduled on Friday between Russian president Vladimir Putin and Tsipras on the sidelines of the St Petersburg economic forum.

Time (Xetra: 17T.DE - news) to seal an agreement with Greece before its bailout expires on June 30 is running out as it will also the need the approval of several national parliaments, including the Bundestag in European paymaster Germany.

Expressing the general mood in Brussels towards Tsipras s diplomacy, European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker admitted to being baffled.

Greece must pay another 6.7 billion euros to the ECB in July and August. They fear that Athens will curb withdrawals under a capital controls regime, as Cyprus did during a crisis in 2013.

Tsipras, who was elected on an anti-austerity promise in January and who has been reluctant to accept a deal that would raise taxes and cut spending further, warned in turn that Greece's exit would lead to the undoing of the euro.

It's not just eurozone countries that would be affected by a Greek exit from the euro.

European Union leaders and Greece’s creditors head into a flurry of behind-the-scenes diplomacy ahead of high-level meetings to unlock aid for the nation flirting with default.

The goal, Tsipras stressed, was to bring the negotiations to "the highest political level" in Europe, and that he would be working for the success of the summit, Efe news agency reported on Friday.

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