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Merkel slams comments from ex Irish bank directors

BRUSSELS (AP) -- German Chancellor Angela Merkel has blasted newly disclosed comments by ex-bosses of a bailed-out Irish bank who mocked foreign depositors and conspired to conceal the true scale of the bank's losses.

The internal calls published earlier this week featured, among other things, one Anglo Irish Bank executive telling others to attract depositors from abroad, particularly Germany. A colleague replied by singing a line of the German national anthem.

Asked about the comments at a European Union summit early Friday, Merkel said their tone is "very, very hard to bear — if not impossible to bear — for people who go to work every day in a normal way and earn their money."

She said such remarks are "really damaging to democracy" and added: "I really have only contempt for this."