Friday August 1, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
31o C
24o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Greece faces anti-austerity shutdown as EU meets

Greek workers will walk off the job for the second time in three weeks on Thursday, hoping to show EU leaders meeting in Brussels that a new wave of wage and pension cuts will only worsen the plight of a people worn down by five years of recession.

Mired in its worst downturn since World War Two, Greece is preparing 11.5 billion euros of cuts to satisfy the troika of the European Commission, European Central Bank and IMF, and secure the next instalment of its 130-billion-euro bailout.

"Just once, the government ought to reject the troika's absurd demands, said Yannis Panagopoulos, head of the GSEE private sector union, one of two major unions that represent about 2 million people, or half of Greece's workforce.

"Agreeing to catastrophic measures means driving society to despair and the consequences as well as the protests will then be indefinite, he said.

European Union leaders will try to bridge their differences over plans for a banking union at their two-day summit which starts on Thursday but no substantial decisions are expected, reviving concerns about complacency in tackling the debt crisis which exploded three years ago in Greece.

Greek unions plan to bring much of the near-bankrupt country to a standstill over the cuts, which also include a further drastic reduction in welfare and health spending.

Most business and public sector activity is expected to grind to a halt during the 24-hour strike called by the ADEDY and GSEE unions, with newspaper kiosk owners and air traffic controllers among various groups joining the protest.

Ships will stay in port, Athens public transport will be disrupted and hospitals will work on emergency staff, while public offices, ministries and shops including bakeries will all be shut.

Several marches are expected to culminate in demonstrations outside parliament, which in the past have ended in clashes between police and protesters. Police put up metal fences outside parliament on the central Syntagma square and about 4,000 policemen are expected to be deployed on the streets.

Opinion polls show rising anger with the bailout which is keeping the economy afloat as Greeks become increasingly pessimistic about their country's future.

"The new, painful package should not be passed, the ADEDY public sector union said in a statement. The new demands will only finish off what's left of our labour, pension and social rights."

But with Greece due to run out of money next month, Athens has little choice but to push through the austerity package being discussed with lenders despite the public opposition.

Greece and inspectors from the troika both say they have agreed on most issues, and Athens is expected to secure aid needed to avoid bankruptcy given EU determination to avoid fresh market turmoil that is threatening to drag down bigger economies such as Spain and Italy. [Reuters]

ekathimerini.com , Thursday October 18, 2012 (09:23)  
Jean-Claude Juncker to make first official visit to Athens on Monday
Britons stranded at sea off Zakynthos towed to safety
Human rights watchdog criticizes decision to file Farmakonisi case
Greece evacuates embassy staff, foreign nationals from Libya
Greek bond yields dip as investors anticipate ratings upgrade
Greek bond yields slipped on Friday, slightly outperforming other lower-rated euro zone bonds as investors anticipated a credit ratings upgrade from Moody's later in the day. Moody's has an ...
Greek exporters worried about impact of Russia sanctions
The Panhellenic Exporters Federation (PSE) has warned the European Commission against the impact of European sanctions against Russia on Greece's exports. The European Union on Tuesday agree...
Inside Business
SOCCER
One win and one loss in Europa League
Greece had a hit and a miss in the first-leg games for the third qualifying round of the Europa League on Thursday, as Atromitos scored a 2-1 win at Sarajevo while Asteras Tripolis lost 1-0 ...
SOCCER
Goalless draw at Liege puts Greens in driving seat
Panathinaikos got the upper hand in the battle for entry to the Champions League playoffs after snatching a goalless draw at Standard Liege on Wednesday. If anything, the Greek cup holders m...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
In trying to conquer, Putin unites Europe
President Vladimir Putin is obliged to feign indifference to the sanctions that the European Union and the United States imposed on Russia this week. But, being the player that he is, he mus...
EDITORIAL
Our own worst enemies
A new study has come to exemplify the cliche notion that Greeks find it easier to excel abroad, where they fare much better than they do at home. According to research by epidemiologist John...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
RECENT NEWS
1. Jean-Claude Juncker to make first official visit to Athens on Monday
2. Britons stranded at sea off Zakynthos towed to safety
3. Greek bond yields dip as investors anticipate ratings upgrade
4. Human rights watchdog criticizes decision to file Farmakonisi case
5. Greek exporters worried about impact of Russia sanctions
6. Greece evacuates embassy staff, foreign nationals from Libya
more news
Today
This Week
1. Greece evacuates embassy staff, foreign nationals from Libya
2. Greek exporters worried about impact of Russia sanctions
3. Human rights watchdog criticizes decision to file Farmakonisi case
4. Greek bond yields dip as investors anticipate ratings upgrade
5. Britons stranded at sea off Zakynthos towed to safety
6. Jean-Claude Juncker to make first official visit to Athens on Monday
Today
This Week
1. Wine cup used by Pericles found in grave north of Athens
2. Quadriplegic woman on life support 'dies due to unpaid power bills'
3. Defense Minister Avramopoulos to represent Greece at European Commission
4. Worlds largest solar boat on Greek mission
5. Greece names fifth privatization agency chief in four years
6. What lessons can we draw from antiquity?
Find us ...
... on
Twitter
... on Facebook
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.