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Obama congratulates new Greek prime minister

Monday - 6/25/2012, 5:05pm  ET

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama has called new Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras (ahn-TOH'-nees sah-mah-RAHS') and urged him to work closely with European and international institutions as his government seeks to renegotiate terms of tough austerity measures under its international debt bailout agreement.

The White House says Obama spoke with Samaras on Monday and congratulated him on his recent election. Obama voiced strong support for Greece and wished Samaras a speedy recovery from eye surgery as well.

The White House said Obama also encouraged Samaras to work with the European Union, the International Monetary Fund and the European Central Bank to implement fiscal changes.

On Saturday, Greece's government said it would seek to repeal some taxes, halt layoffs and extend by two years the deadlines for the austerity measures.


(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)