Tuesday, November 6, 2012
Greek strike shuts down country ahead of cliffhanger austerity vote
The nation of Greece comes to a screeching halt again for two days starting Tuesday. Unions have called for a 48-hour general strike ahead of an anticipated vote by the Greek government on yet another round of austerity measures late Wednesday night. Protesters will march on the parliament in central Athens on both days.
Greek media are expecting the vote to be a cliffhanger with narrow passage by just a handful of votes.
If legislators do not pass the measures, it will endanger the payout of the next international bailout installment of 31.5 billion euros, which the government desperately needs to stay in operation. Without the funds, it says it will run out of money by mid-November.
But Greeks are furious over the effects of multiple rounds of belt-tightening, which have resulted in cuts to pensions and pay and seen unemployment in Greece's fifth year of recession soar to over 25%. Critics of austerity have called for economic stimulus programs instead, like those implemented in the United States. Read more >>