EU and IMF thrash out deal following months of disagreements, with funds to be released in July once European parliaments ratify the deal

For the best part of a decade, Greece has wanted to become a “normal” country, and late on Thursday it appeared to begin that process, after creditors agreed to disburse €8.5bn (£7.4bn) of bailout funds aimed at putting the debt-stricken nation back on the road to recovery.

The money, signed off after months of disagreement between the European Union and International Monetary Fund over how to reduce Athens’ staggering debt pile, will be released in July, once European parliaments ratify the deal.

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