7 Feb 2012

Greek deadline passes with no deal

5:12 am on 7 February 2012

Greece has let yet another deadline slip for responding to terms for a new bailout from the European Union and the International Monetary Fund.

Failure to strike a deal to secure the 130 billion euro rescue risks pushing Athens into a debt default.

Negotiations between coalition parties on the austerity measures, which broke down on Sunday, have been delayed until Tuesday.

Athens needs 130 billion euros ($US171 billion) and help from private lenders to avoid a debt default.

President Nicolas Sarkozy of France said time was running out for a deal.

After another meeting with Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, he urged

Greek political leaders to agree to reforms, saying the crisis had to be solved "once and for all".

The BBC reports Athens faces loan repayments to private lenders of 14.4 billion euros on 20 March which it currently cannot afford to pay.