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Greek PM Says Hands Off the European Central Bank

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There is trouble brewing over the European Central Bank's Greek debt position, but Greek Prime Minister Papademos isn't going near it.

Guess who could actually benefit from the European debt crisis? That's right, the European Central Bank .

The ECB owns a chunk of Greek debt that it acquired at a discount, and it could get repaid at full face value - even as private sector debtholders are being asked to take a haircut. So would the central bank perhaps change course a bit to tamp down the resentment? Greek Prime Minister Lucas Papademos, a former member of the ECB, says in an exclusive interview with CNBCthat messing with the central bank's independence is unacceptable.

Papademos told CNBC he didn't want to comment on decisions by the ECB, but added, "The ECB has an unambiguous mandate on what it has to do. It has and I'm sure it will continue to perform its tasks in accordance with its mandate" to fight inflation and preserve financial stability. "My judgment is that the bank has performed its tasks in a very effective manner."

So might the ECB take steps like printing money if it is faced with deflation?

Careful there, says Papademos. "We should not in any way, through comments or other ways, impair the independence of the central bank to perform its tasks," he says. "There is a mandate, and that mandate is guiding the policies of the central bank. Printing money is not an answer."

You can watch the interview on the video clip.

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