Obama arrives in France to attend economic summit

November 3, 2011 - 3:05 AM

NICE, France (AP) — President Barack Obama has arrived in France to join world leaders at a summit of the Group of 20 industrialized and developing countries, a meeting overshadowed by Europe's debt crisis and surprise plans by Greece to put a bailout deal to a popular vote.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy (sar-koh-ZEE') is hosting the two-day meeting in Cannes (kan), France, the city known worldwide for its annual film festival.

Obama was meeting separately Thursday with Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Sarkozy and Merkel helped strike a $130 billion bailout deal for Greece. But the Greek prime minister's surprising announcement of a December referendum is raising doubts about the deal.

The White House says the U.S. can help guide Europe through its financial crisis but that it's ultimately Europe's problem to solve.