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EUROPEAN leaders will clash in Brussels today during a difficult summit on the budget for the 27-country European Union.

Britain is threatening to use their nation's veto to reduce the EU budget, claiming it is justifiable in light of the demands on individual nation's own budgets.

The UK Prime Minister David Cameron, speaking for other member states such as the Netherlands and Sweden, is demanding a reduction in the financial clout --and political sway -- of the EU's institutions.

The battle over the budget for the next seven years is expected to be tumultuous and lengthy.

Mr Cameron is pushing for a further €5bn cut and he is under huge pressure to veto any seven-year deal which would exceed the old 2007-2013 €1 trillion budget by as much as a euro.

The budget primarily funds programmes to spur growth in the bloc's less developed regions and farming and amounts to about 1pc of the EU's gross domestic product.

The talks come as international lenders failed for the second week to reach a deal to release emergency aid for Greece.

Eurozone finance ministers, the International Monetary Fund and the European Central Bank were unable to agree in 12 hours of overnight talks on how to make the country's debt sustainable.

They want a solution before paying the next loan tranche which is urgently needed to keep Greece afloat.

The EU budget is a small fraction of what the 27 member states' governments spend in total.