Greece shuts banks amidst fears of possible exit from eurozone

Washington D. C., June 29 - Greece has reportedly shut its banks for six business days, starting Monday, with strict limits on ATM withdrawals, amidst a rising concern over the country's economic future.

The country's stock exchange has also been shut as part of the stringent measures announced on Sunday as a possible Greek exit from the eurozone loomed large, reported The Washington Post.

The move indicated that the country's five-year long battle to stay in the eurozone could come to an end swiftly, even as leaders elsewhere called for a way to avoid that.

The crisis worsened after Greece decided to pull its negotiators out of bailout talks on Friday. The European Central Bank declared on Sunday that it will provide no new emergency support to Greek banks.

Greece's Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said in a brief statement on Sunday that the ECB's decision was 'offensive' and a 'disgrace' for Europe in general. He also added that he was seeking an extended and enlarged bailout from European lenders that would carry the country past Tuesday.

Greece has to make a loan payment to the International Monetary Fund ( IMF) on Tuesday and it looks almost certain to default on that payment.

A prolonged bank shutdown and tough capital controls will wreak further havoc on the Greek economy by driving tourists away and chilling commercial activity.

Meanwhile, U. S President Barack Obama spoke to German Chancellor Angela Merkel on phone and the two agreed to take all steps to resolve the crisis. (ANI)

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