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Greek: Labor Unions oppose austerity measures

06-19-2011 09:20 BJT

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Members of the labor unions supported by the Greek Communist Party have held a large-scale rally to protest the latest austerity measures approved by the government. Battered by strikes, protests and the string of resignations, Prime Minister George Papandreou reshuffled his cabinet by naming an internal rival as a new finance minister, in a bid to unite his ruling socialist PASOK party.

About 5-thousand labor union members marched through central Athens to show their unabated anger over the additional austerity measures planned by the government.

Saturday's rally comes less than 24 hours after Prime Minister George Papandreou reshuffled his Cabinet.

Papandreou said his new government would push through the unpopular fiscal and structural reform programme while doing more to stimulate growth.

But the leader of the protest on Saturday said the government's changes made no difference and that the austerity measures would still be as harsh.

Aleka Papariga, Greek Communist Party Leader said "Don't be fooled. Don't fall into the government's trap. Lenders and debtors will sit at the same table, having agreed to skin the people alive."

Other residents in Athens also voiced their pessimism about the prospect of the country riding out of the current crisis.

Athens resident said "It is like receiving a jolt of an electroshock, the country is revived briefly through help from the IMF, but the truth is that Greece is dead already."

Meanwhile, an opinion poll shows that almost half of Greek voters want parliament to reject the austerity measures.

The poll also shows the public wants the country to hold early elections to replace the embattled government of Prime Minister George Papandreou.

Editor:Xiong Qu |Source: CNTV.CN

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