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Don’t kill euro zone with rhetoric: German minister

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle on Monday warned politicians to rein in the language they use about the euro zone debt crisis after a weekend of ugly exchanges in the German press over Italy and Greece.

business Updated: Aug 07, 2012 01:41 IST

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle on Monday warned politicians to rein in the language they use about the euro zone debt crisis after a weekend of ugly exchanges in the German press over Italy and Greece.

Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti had told magazine Der Spiegel that he needed Germany's moral support but not its cash and that Berlin should "cut some slack" for those countries implementing budget cuts demanded by the European Union.

He also said governments needed to keep some room for maneuvre independence of decisions taken in national parliaments — a thinly veiled attack on the role that Germany's http://www.hindustantimes.com/Images/Popup/2012/8/07-08-biz8.jpglower house has played in slowing up action on the crisis.

Westerwelle's remarks looked like as much of an attack on ruling coalition allies Christian Social Union (CSU), whose leader Markus Soeder said on Sunday that Berlin should cut Greece off by the end of 2012, before it was too late.

“The tone in the debate is extremely dangerous,” Westerwelle said in a statement. “We've got to take care that we don’t talk Europe to death.”

The CSU’s Soeder had said on Sunday that “you have to apply the old mountain climbing rule.” “If someone is hanging on your rope and pulling you down into the abyss with him, you have to cut the rope,” he said. “We are at that stage now. If we don't cut the rope on which Greece is hanging in time, Germany could be in danger.”

Monti had warned that if the euro became a factor in European countries drifting apart “then the basis of the European project will have been destroyed.”