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Strikes in Greece against new cuts

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ATHENS  - Strikes hit Greece on Thursday against a new round of tax hikes and labour changes considered by the government under the country's EU rescue deal.

Civil servants, teachers, sailors and hospital doctors walked off the job to protest the new austerity measures currently negotiated with the country's creditors.

Some 6,500 people demonstrated in Athens in support of the strike, police said.

"(A government) elected to stop the austerity slide is now carrying out neoliberal policies in their entirety," the civil servants' union Adedy said.


The country's international creditors -- fellow EU states and the International Monetary Fund -- want Greece to overhaul its labour legislation to make crippling strikes less likely while also facilitating layoffs.

The government earlier this week also tabled a new budget containing around a billion euros from extra taxation on items including cars, fixed telephony, pay TV, fuel, tobacco, coffee and beer.

Public spending on salaries and pensions will also be cut by 5.7 billion euros next year.

Unions are also angry about plans to raise over two billion euros ($2.1 billion) next year from privatisations, including 1.2 billion euros from the sale of regional airports.

Another strike wave is scheduled for December 8, two days before the budget is to be approved by parliament.

Greece's leftist-led government is desperate to reach agreement with the creditors on the new measures before the end of the year in order to secure a pledge of debt relief, hoping it will kickstart the ailing economy.

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Muslim Global: Strikes in Greece against new cuts
Strikes in Greece against new cuts
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