Greece leaves Eurogroup meeting as bailout extension is rejected

Joe Hall
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Varoufakis told reporters today he would ask for a bailout extension (Source: Getty)

Greece has walked out of today's Eurogroup meeting after its request for a bailout extension was turned down by Eurozone finance ministers.

Read more: Alexis Tsipras calls bailout referendum

Eurogroup president Jeroen Dijsselbloem said despite offering the "maximum" possible flexibility, its proposals were rejected meaning the existing Greek bailout programme will expire on Tuesday night.

Dijsselbloem said Greece's decision to call a bailout referendum came as a surprise as talks were still ongoing between the two parties.

Last night Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras called a referendum on 5 July for the country to vote on whether to accept the current bailout deal on offer from its creditors.

He said the offer included "unbearable" reforms and "humiliating" austerity.

Having failed to secure the much-needed financial relief, Greece now looks likely to default on a €1.6bn (£1.1bn) repayment due to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Tuesday, something that would increase the likelihood of the country leaving the eurozone.

Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis said a deal could still be reached by Tuesday but demanded better terms from Eurozone creditors.

He called the Eurogroup's decision not to extend its current agreement "for a few days" to cover the referendum would permanently damage its credibility "as a democratic union of partner member states".

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