Europe

Greece's Tsipras visits Germany amid argument over bonus

  • German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, and Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras brief the media prior to talks at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany, Friday, Dec. 16, 2016. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, and Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras brief the media prior to talks at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany, Friday, Dec. 16, 2016. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)  (The Associated Press)

  • German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, and Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras brief the media prior to talks at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany, Friday, Dec. 16, 2016. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, and Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras brief the media prior to talks at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany, Friday, Dec. 16, 2016. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)  (The Associated Press)

  • German Chancellor Angela Merkel, left, and Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras attend a joint statement prior to talks at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany, Friday, Dec. 16, 2016. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel, left, and Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras attend a joint statement prior to talks at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany, Friday, Dec. 16, 2016. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)  (The Associated Press)

Greece's prime minister says he wants to help Greeks who have made "enormous sacrifices in the name of Europe" as he visits German Chancellor Angela Merkel amid an argument about a Christmas bonus payment for low-earning pensioners.

The bonus plan prompted creditors to suspend a new debt-relief deal. Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras' government insists it's not breaching the terms of its bailout deal, but European creditors say Athens should have sought clearance first.

Tsipras said Friday his "vision" is that improved Greek growth "affects not just statistics or figures, but that the wounds of the crisis can be treated." He didn't explicitly mention the bonuses.

Merkel said they would discuss the bailout program but "this isn't the place where decisions will be made." Tsipras and Merkel took no questions.