Athens: Fighting outside parliament on eve of Greece’s austerity vote


ReutersVideo on Jun 28, 2011


By Daniel Howden in Athens,

June 28 - Demonstrators clash with riot police as Greece braces for austerity cutbacks.

Wednesday, 29 June 2011–Athens was rocked by a day of street battles yesterday on the eve of a critical vote on austerity measures demanded of Greece if the country is to avoid a potential disaster.

The escalating confrontation between people and political leaders, expected to resume today, has stoked fears of a banking and eurozone crisis that some analysts are equating with a “second credit crunch”.

A day that began with a peaceful show of force from Greece’s unions quickly descended into running battles between masked youths and riot police outside parliament yesterday.

With much of the country at a standstill thanks to a general strike and rolling power cuts, Greek MPs will vote later today on a package of austerity measures which are seen as essential by much of the rest of Europe but are unpopular in the country itself.

The Deputy Prime Minister Theodoros Pangalos said that tanks may have to be sent into the streets to stem the chaos if the bill fails to pass and a run on Greek banks begins. Continue reading