In this Aug. 24, 2012 file photo German Chancellor Angela Merkel, left, and Prime Minister of Greece Antonis Samaras, right, shake hands after a joint news conference as part of a meeting at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany. Merkel wants the Greeks to keep the euro. Her vice chancellor says it wouldn't be so bad if they abandoned the common currency. Another ally says Greece should leave the euro club within months.
BERLIN — Chancellor Angela Merkel's spokesman has dismissed the idea of Germany abandoning the euro as "absurd."
Steffen Seibert was asked Friday about comments by Italy's former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi that a German exit from the currency would be "no tragedy."
Italian news agency ANSA quoted Berlusconi on Thursday as saying an exit by Germany, the region's biggest economy, would be one possibility to help heavily indebted European countries like Italy. He said the other option would be for the European Central Bank to become the region's lender of last resort.
Seibert said "the idea that Germany could leave the euro, and that this wouldn't be a drama for Europe, is absurd."