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Last updated: February 16. 2013 8:35PM - 85 Views

Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras chats with President Karolos Papoulias on the results of his recent European trip, in Athens, on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012. Last week, Samaras travelled to Berlin and Paris for talks on the course of his country's lagging program of economic reform and cutbacks, in exchange for which Greece is receiving billions in international rescue loans. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)
Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras chats with President Karolos Papoulias on the results of his recent European trip, in Athens, on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012. Last week, Samaras travelled to Berlin and Paris for talks on the course of his country's lagging program of economic reform and cutbacks, in exchange for which Greece is receiving billions in international rescue loans. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)
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(AP) Greece's prime minister has promised that a new round of painful austerity measures planned for the next two years will be the last for the recession-mired country.


Antonis Samaras told a meeting of his conservative party's officials that without the 11.5 billion ($14.4 billion) cutbacks Greece would have to leave the 17-nation eurozone.


Athens is bound to implement the new spending cuts in 2013 and 2014 under its commitments to international creditors who are keeping Greece afloat with rescue loans.


Otherwise, the bailout will stop, forcing the country to default on its mountain of debt.


After weeks of deliberations with junior coalition partners, Samaras' conservative-led government is close to finalizing how exactly it will make the cuts. The program will be discussed with austerity inspectors due in Athens next week.


Associated Press
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