Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras is set to visit the southern German state of Bavaria, the stronghold of the Christian Social Union of Bavaria party that has been strident in its criticism of Greece, German newspaper Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported Monday.
Mr. Samaras has requested a meeting in Bavaria with the state’s Minister-President, Horst Seehofer, according to the newspaper, which didn’t say where it got its information.
Mr. Seehofer told the newspaper that Mr. Samaras was welcome to visit, and should make the trip “this year if possible.” He was also “ready to make a return visit to Greece,” the newspaper said.
The CSU rules Germany in coalition with Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union party and the liberal Free Democratic Party. Key CSU members–including Bavarian finance minister Markus Soeder–have repeatedly called for Greece to leave the euro zone.
The development comes just days after German Chancellor Angela Merkel visited Athens for the first time since the euro zone sovereign debt crisis began.
The party has struck a milder tone toward Greece of late, with Mr. Seehofer this month indicating he might support giving the country more time to reduce its debt.
(source: sueddeutsche, marketwatch)