Protesters take part in an anti-austerity rally in front of the parliament in Athens, Greece, on Wednesday, June 17, 2015. (AP Photo/Yorgos Karahalis)
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Eurozone finance ministers were set to hold crunch talks over Greece Thursday, after a barrage of warnings that the country risks a damaging exit from the EU if it fails to strike a deal with its creditors.As negotiations between Athens, the EU, ECB and IMF over the last 7.2 billion euro ($8.1 billion) tranche of Greece's massive international bailout grew increasingly acrimonious this week, officials started openly discussing the prospect of Greece crashing out of the euro. On Wednesday, a day ahead of the Luxembourg meeting of the eurozone's 19 countries, Greece's central bank warned for the first time that the country could suffer a "painful" exit from the single currency area -- and even the European Union -- if it fails to reach a deal. The International Monetary Fund, European Union and European Central Bank have been deadlocked with Greece's left-wing government over how far it will go to reform its pensions system and hike taxes in return for cash it desperately needs to avoid a default.
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