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Greece submits loan extension request to eurozone

Greece has formally asked its European creditors for a six-month loan extension. The cash-strapped nation is opposed to further austerity measures. Germany, however, has already refused the proposal.

Greece has formally submitted a request for a six-month loan extension on the part of its European creditors. The request was designed to give the indebted nation extra time to develop anti-austerity reforms.

"The request has been sent" to Brussels, a government source said.

Eurogroup President Jeroen Dijsselbloem confirmed the request had been received.

A spokesman for German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble rejected the proposal saying it lacked substance.

Eurozone finance ministers will meet Friday in Brussels to consider the Greek proposal.

In making the request, Greece is attempting to secure further financing while at the same time avoiding harsh conditions that eurozone countries are likely to impose on such additional aid.

International creditors have urged Greece's new leftist government to extend its current bailout package, which expires on February 28. Greek leaders however have said they would not agree to an extension without renegotiating the conditions for the bailout.

"Our proposition will be written in such a way that it will cover both the demands of the Greek side and the head of the Eurogroup," Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis told reporters Wednesday.

Government spokesman Gavril Sakellaridis said earlier that his nation had been working closely with its eurozone partners in an effort to reach an acceptable deal, but insisted that Greece would not agree to further austerity measures as a means to secure future bailouts.

Greece needs an additional 11.9 billion euros ($13.5 billion) to finance bond repayments by August.

bw/sms (Reuters, AFP, dpa, AP)