Germany's parliament approves rescue plan for Greece

11:26, May 08, 2010      

Email | Print | Subscribe | Comments | Forum 

Germany's parliament approved the nation's rescue package for Greece on Friday, while opposition voices are loud in the country.

The Bundestag, or the lower house of parliament approved the bill with 390 voting in favour, 72 against, and 139 abstaining. Later, the upper house, the Bundesrat, passed the bill smoothly as the coalition government enjoys a majority there.

On Monday, German Chancellor Angela Merkel's government approved a rescue package of 22.4 billion euros (28.5 billion U.S. dollars) for Greece over the next three years, as part of a 110 billion-euro international rescue plan backed by eurozone members and the International Monetary Fund.

The approval of the bill provides legislative support for Merkel, who will attend the summit for eurozone nations in Brussels on Friday evening to discuss the details of the international rescue package.

Merkel praised the vote as an important decision to ensure " greater security for euro for our citizens," after the approval.

She also reiterated the importance for Greece to strictly implement the austerity plan it promised , saying the bailout plan "will only be effective in combination with the ambitious Greek austerity program."

Although the bill has been approved, the opposition voices are still quite loud in the country, which may affect Merkel's later actions.

The country's most widely-read newspaper, Bild, has criticized the rescue plan for violating the article of the Lisbon Treaty which forbids one member state from assuming the liabilities of another.

Opinion polls have shown a majority of Germans oppose this largest bailout plan in euro history, which may cause Merkel's coalition government to lose a very important upcoming local state election.

On Sunday the state North Rhine-Westphalia will hold its legislative election. It is the most populous state in Germany, which is governed by the same coalition CDU-FDP as the federal government.

The state has 13.5 million voters, which have frequently set the future course for German federal politics. The latest survey showed 56 percent of voters thought aiding Greece was wrong.

[1] [2]


  • Do you have anything to say?


Special Coverage
  • Premier Wen Jiabao visits Hungary, Britain, Germany
  • From drought to floods
Major headlines
Editor's Pick
  • On Sept. 26, a resident passes by a flower terrace decorated for the coming National Day. (Xinhua/Hang Xingwei)
  • The photo, taken on Sept. 26, shows the SWAT team ready for the joint exercise. (Xinhua/Wangkai)
  • Two metro trains in Shanghai collided Tuesday afternoon, and an identified number of passengers were injured in the accident, the Shanghai-based reported. Equipment failures were believed to have caused the crash on the Line 10 subway, Xinhua quoted local subway operator as saying.
  • An employee at a gold store in Yiwu, located in east China's Zhejiang province, shows gold jewelry on Monday.(Xinhua/Zhang Jiancheng)
  • Tourists ride camels near China's largest desert lake Hongjiannao in Yulin, north China's Shaanx Province, Sept. 24, 2011. Hongjiannao is shrinking as a result of climate change and human activities, and may vanish in a few decades. Its lake area, which measured more than 6,700 hectares in 1996, has shrunk to 4,180 hectares. Its water level is declining by 20-30 centimeters annually and its water PH value has risen to 9.0-9.42 from 7.4-7.8. (Xinhua/Liu Yu)
  • Actors perform royal dance at the Gyeongbok Palace in Seoul, Sept. 27, 2011. A ceremony commemorating the 38th South Korea Sightseeing Day was held in Gyeongbok Palace on Tuesday. (Xinhua/He Lulu)
Hot Forum Discussion