NEWS

In Brief

Strike action

Unions plan walkout for Nov 25, strike for Dec 15 The country’s two main unions, the General Confederation of Greek Labor (GSEE) and the civil servants’ union ADEDY, yesterday called a three-hour work stoppage for November 25 and called on their members, who number more than 2 million, to join a general strike on December 15 in protest at the debt-ridden government’s ongoing austerity drive. The work stoppage next Thursday may result in public transport disruptions between noon and 3 p.m. The strike for December 15 was announced by GSEE last month and is now being joined by ADEDY amid speculation of severe cuts to spending in the public sector. ADEDY president Spyros Papaspyros described the government’s austerity drive as «a marathon whose finishing line keeps moving.» Medical exams Doctors offer free tests In a bid to express their frustration with the government’s plans to slash spending in the health sector, doctors at state hospitals yesterday declared that all medical examinations would be free next week, from Monday, November 22, through Sunday, November 28. Patients will also be waived a 3-euro nominal fee usually paid for each visit, doctors said. It remained unclear whether the doctors’ union had reached the decision on the free examinations with the management of the hospitals or announced the initiative without prior consultation. Academics attacked Two professors of Aristotle University’s physical education faculty were hospitalized in Thessaloniki yesterday, one with serious injuries, after being set upon by unidentified assailants wielding clubs. Witnesses said they saw two men wearing motorcycle helmets fleeing from the premises of the department shortly after the attack at around 3 p.m. The pair fled by motorcycle and remained at large late last night. Fugitive caught A 26-year-old Romanian being sought by Europol was to face a prosecutor in Corinth yesterday following his arrest in the nearby resort of Loutraki on Wednesday night. The suspect fled his homeland after being sentenced to seven years in jail, according to police, who did not determine on what charges he was convicted. Abduction charges Police in Corinth yesterday were questioning a 22-year-old Greek man alleged to have abducted an infant from its mother. The child was not injured, according to police, who returned the infant to its mother immediately after locating the suspect. The exact circumstances of the alleged abduction remained unclear. Argyroupoli blast A homemade explosive device comprising 11 gas canisters detonated early yesterday outside the premises of an information systems company in Argyroupoli, southern Athens. The blast, which occurred shortly after 5 a.m., blew out the windows of the building and damaged its entrance.