Protests Against Austerity Measures Turn Violent In Athens


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Protests against the austerity measures in Athens turned violent as protesters threw petrol bombs at two luxury hotels in the center of the capital outside the parliament. Police were forced to fire teargas on protesters.

A few hours earlier, the parliament had approved reforms and spending cuts as condition of a 10 billion Euro EU-IMF bailout that is meant to help Greece get over the debt crisis.

The workers in the private and public sectors struck against these measures, and grounded flights, shut the schools down and paralyzed public transportation.

About 20,000 people marched against austerity measures in the streets of Athens, and 200 people attacked former minister Kostis Hatzidakis with stones and sticks. The face of the conservative minister is said to have been covered in blood as he took shelter in a building.

The parliament passed a law that cuts the wages of people working in the public state-owned bus and railway companies, and weakened the power of collective bargaining to the purpose of allowing the company deals to prevail.

Before the strike began an union trade leader said they wanted to convey the government the message that the people would not accept these measures that impoverish them and increase unemployment.

He warned that more action will be taken against these laws after the holidays, and that the workers would not back down and would prevail.11

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