8:16PM GMT 18 Feb 2012
Germany drawing up plans for Greece to leave the euro
Plans for Greece to default, potentially leaving the euro, have been drafted in Germany as the European Union begins to face up to the fact that Greek debt is spiralling out of control - with or without a second bailout.
The German finance ministry is actively pushing for Greece to declare itself bankrupt and to agree a "haircut" on the bulk of its debts held by banks, a move that would be classed as a default by financial markets.
Eurozone finance ministers meet on Monday to approve the next tranche of loans from the EU and the International Monetary Fund, designed to stave off national bankruptcy while the new Greek government puts the country's finances in order.
But the severe austerity measures being demanded have caused such fury in Greece, and the cuts required are so deep, that Wolfgang Schäuble, the German finance minister, does not believe that any government would be able to implement them.