A top French official said German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other conservatives are driving much of Europe into a serious slump through "blind ideology."
French Minister of Industrial Renewal Arnaud Montebourg said Merkel, the "German right" and other increasingly partisan conservatives were to blame for the eurozone's austerity-driven downturn.
"Certain European leaders, led by Mrs. Merkel, are fixated by blind ideology," he said in remarks quoted by the British newspaper The Daily Telegraph.
Merkel has warned the German Parliament the agenda of next week's Group of 20 summit in Mexico would be dominated by the euro crisis.
She said there are limits to what Germany can do to save the eurozone economy, but she also spoke about her desire to maintain European unity.
"Germany is strong, Germany is the economic engine and ... the anchor of stability in Europe," she said.
Her country would use "its strength and its power to use for the well-being of people, not just in Germany, but also to help European unity and the global economy," she said.
"But Germany's strength is not infinite," she said.