01172018

Greece, European creditors divided as Athens seeks 6-month debt deal extension

  • Belgium EU Greece Bailout-1.jpg

    The Greek, left, and EU flag flap in the wind outside the Greek embassy in Brussels on Friday, Feb. 20, 2015. Eurozone finance ministers meet for a crucial day of talks to see whether a Greek debt relief proposal is acceptable to Germany and other nations using the common currency. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo) (The Associated Press)

  • Belgium EU Greece Bailout-2.jpg

    The Greek, left, and EU flag flap in the wind outside the Greek embassy in Brussels on Friday, Feb. 20, 2015. Eurozone finance ministers meet for a crucial day of talks to see whether a Greek debt relief proposal is acceptable to Germany and other nations using the common currency. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo) (The Associated Press)

  • 60e6cf0c3719a9086e0f6a706700e6cc.jpg

    The Greek, left, and EU flag flap in the wind outside the Greek embassy in Brussels on Friday, Feb. 20, 2015. Eurozone finance ministers meet for a crucial day of talks to see whether a Greek debt relief proposal is acceptable to Germany and other nations using the common currency. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo) (The Associated Press)

  • 6e8305fd3719a9086e0f6a706700d4ab.jpg

    The Greek, left, and EU flag flap in the wind as a man walks outside the Greek embassy in Brussels on Friday, Feb. 20, 2015. Eurozone finance ministers meet for a crucial day of talks to see whether a Greek debt relief proposal is acceptable to Germany and other nations using the common currency. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo) (The Associated Press)

Greece and its European creditors are converging on Brussels to try to bridge major differences over Athens’ request for a six-month loan extension to help pay off massive debts.

The meeting on Friday is the third among finance ministers from the 19-nation eurozone in just over a week.

It was called to respond to the left-wing government’s demand for more time to finalize its current bailout program and negotiate new arrangements with its partners that will be less onerous on Greek citizens.

Greece’s most influential creditor, Germany, claims the request is a “Trojan horse” to help the government dodge its commitments.

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras swept to power last month on a pledge to ease the austerity measures championed by Germany and reorganize the 240 billion euro bailout debt.

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