Euro leaders to set up urgent crisis fund

Euro leaders to set up urgent crisis fund

French President Nicolas Sarkozy speaks during an extraordinary European Union summit at the European Council headquarters in Brussels on Friday. AFPThe 16 heads of the countries that share the euro currency said they want to build an emergency fund for countries targeted by powerful bond markets, after the region's debt mountain sent global bourses tumbling and triggered alarm from the US to Asia.
The leaders, meeting in Brussels, also agreed to impose new curbs on speculators blamed for sustained and deliberate attacks.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that the "stabilisation" fund would send "a very clear signal" to market speculators to back off, with Belgium's outgoing premier Yves Leterme saying the meachanism would be ready by "the end of the weekend."A decision to "accelerate" public deficit reduction plans and "reinforce" rules limiting room for maneouvre on broken budgets came after they concluded a much-vaunted deal to loan debt-addled Greece 80 billion euros over three years.

A meeting of all 27 European Union finance ministers, tasked with setting up the fund worth scores of billions of euros, was hastily arranged for Sunday in Brussels to deal with what French President Nicolas Sarkozy called a "systemic crisis."

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