By Annika Breidthardt KARLSRUHE, Germany
(Reuters) - Germany's top court prepared on Tuesday to hear a legal challenge to the euro zone bailouts, but its finance minister said he was certain that aid payments had not violated German or European law.
The Karlsruhe-based Constitutional Court convened to consider a lawsuit brought by six eurosceptic plaintiffs against German contributions to the rescues of Greece, Ireland and Portugal.
The court is not likely to block the German government's participation in bailouts altogether, or force the government to withdraw its commitments to current rescue plans, legal experts say.
But most experts, including government sources, say they expect the court to impose conditions making it harder for the government to provide fresh aid. For example, parliament's lower house may be given a bigger say in approving future bailouts.