NEWS

Universities face upheaval as staff to strike

Greek universities are in for a new spell of upheaval as administrative staff are to walk off the job from Tuesday as part of a two-day strike called by their national union to protest the imminent dismissal of colleagues as part of the government’s civil service overhaul.

The walkout, which could disrupt students’ chances of completing the winter semester, is being held “as a warning” to the government, unionists said over the weekend, referring to the fact that dozens of staff face dismissal at the end of this month when an eight-month evaluation period is set to expire. At the end of the assessment period, in accordance with troika-imposed reforms, the employees will either be transferred to another post in the civil service or fired.

A three-month strike at the end of last year by staff at Athens University and the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA) threw the two institutions into disarray. Athens University staff have said they will assemble in front of the main faculty building in central Athens this week and block its entrance.

Similar protests are expected at other faculties across the country.

Universities were subject to a different kind of upheaval last week when hooded thugs stormed the campuses of the NTUA and the Athens University of Economics and Business (AUEB) during student elections and vandalized windows and tables as well as threatening staff and students. An academic at the NTUA was injured.

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