German Chancellor Angela Merkel defended Monday the austerity policies she has championed for the eurozone, telling a televised town hall meeting: "We are seeing the first successes."
"Italy has exited from the deficit procedure. Greece is on the way
to improvement," she responded to a questioner describing himself as a German-Italian. He had asked her to explain her refusal to offer more generous aid to stumbling eurozone nations.
Weaknesses in those nations' economies had had to be fixed, she
said, adding, "It is better to be tough with one another now."
Merkel denied that she lacked sympathy for the other nations. "My
heart beats very enthusiastically for the others in Europe," she