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Officials: Germany weakening on sanctions

 From left, French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde, European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, Spanish Finance Minister Elena Salgado and Greek ...
 European Central Bank President Jean Claude Trichet gestures during a round table meeting of eurogroup finance ministers at the Kiem Center in Luxemb...
 European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, right, speaks with French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde during a round table meeting of eurogroup ...
 From left, Finnish Finance Minister Jyrki Tapani Katainen, Dutch Finance Minister Jan Kees De Jager, Swedish Finance Minister Anders Borg and French ...

Luxembourg EU Finance Ministers

From left, French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde, European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, Spanish Finance Minister Elena Salgado and Greek ...

Luxembourg EU Finance Ministers

European Central Bank President Jean Claude Trichet gestures during a round table meeting of eurogroup finance ministers at the Kiem Center in Luxemb...

Luxembourg EU Finance Ministers

European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, right, speaks with French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde during a round table meeting of eurogroup ...

Luxembourg EU Finance Ministers

From left, Finnish Finance Minister Jyrki Tapani Katainen, Dutch Finance Minister Jan Kees De Jager, Swedish Finance Minister Anders Borg and French ...

Officials at meeting of European Union finance ministers are saying that Germany is softening its insistance on strict budget rules for countries using the euro.
Diplomats say Germany, long a proponent of tough penalties for overspenders, appears to be "more open now" to other options.
They said Berlin was yielding to French pressure for more leniency at Monday's meeting.
The diplomats requested anonymity because the meeting was still under way.
Too much spending took Greece to the edge of bankruptcy earlier this year and shook Europe's currency union.