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France, Germany urge new Cyprus govt to pursue bailout talks

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

France and Germany urged the new government in Cyprus on Monday to negotiate a bailout quickly and welcomed the election of rightwinger Nicos Anastasiades as the president of the financially crippled EU state.

The leader of the right-wing Disy party won 57.5 percent of the vote in a second round run-off against communist-backed Stavros Malas, who polled 42.5 percent, to replace the only communist president in the European Union.

"We welcome the result of the Cypriot elections on 24th February, which will allow for the formation of a government that will quickly continue with the negotiations about a financial assistance programme for Cyprus," the French and German finance ministers Pierre Moscovici and Wolfgang Schaeuble said.

Disy said Anastasiades had been given "a clear and strong mandate to battle for Cyprus," in talks with Brussels on the terms of an estimated 17-billion-euro ($23-billion) bailout package, with much of the damage caused by its Greek-exposed banking sector.

The election was closely watched in the other 16 members of the Eurozone, whose finance ministers had deferred a decision on the proposed bailout until negotiations take place with the new leader.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130225/france-germany-urge-new-cyprus-govt-pursue-bailout-talks