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The new 24 hours strike in Greece started with intense security measures

29 June 2010 / 10:06:45  GRReporter
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The change in the legal labor relations and the reform in the pension system of the country gathered once again the two largest unions of Greece in a common strike against the policy of the socialist government of George Papandreou. The Union of Greek Civil Servants (ADEDY) and the General Confederation of Greek Workers (GSEE) joined their union efforts and urged all Greeks employed both in public and private sector to gather in the center of the capital in front of Pedio tu Areos from where the protest parade began at 11 o’clock this morning.

At the same time the Trade Union of the Greek communists PAME also organized a second protest with a gathering point at Syntagma Square. Their demands are also associated with a boycott of the reforms in labor law. Later in the afternoon the two processions of the various trade union movements will merge in front of parliament. Traffic in the centre of Athens is blocked for cars and the buses will pass by circuitous routes. Armored buses of the special forces for riot control have closed off the main road arteries of the city center and in ready for action in the case of eventual commotion, which traditionally follow such strikes.

In the protest against the government reforms are taking part government officials from the central administration, the municipalities and the state enterprises. Hospitals will operate with reduced staff and private dentists will stop work for 24 hours. In the general protest will also take part local journalists, customs officers, postal employees, airport and part of the railway workers. In the common Greek strike will also participate the General Confederation of craftsmen and traders who urge all the smaller chambers and trade unions to join the strike. Similar protests will be held in all major cities of Greece.

On the eve of the general public strike the government’s spokesman Georgios Petalotos announced that updates to private sector wage will also be frozen. According to the unions after the cut in salaries of civil servants, this is the second strike against the employment rights of the Greeks, which the protesters are not willing to accept. Asked by a journalist whether the government is prepared to call for early elections if the new labor law does not gather enough votes in Parliament Petalotis replied: "There is no such possibility. We have started major changes and we are ready to take them to the end. We will not give in for anyone and anything. "

Expect further details on the development of strike action later in the day.

Tags: strike Greece protests reforms
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