Greece hit by further 48-hour general strike
Protesters have gathered on the streets of Athens today as a 48-hour general strike commences, which will see the country come to a virtual standstill.
Apart from the metro, no public transport is operating as many people opt to join the fourth general strike called this year by the country’s two largest unions.
The general strike is set to disrupt the majority of public services, with doctors and ambulance drivers taking part in the protest.
Trains, buses and ferries will not operate, while airports are set to be shut and air traffic controllers will strike between 0800 and 1200 (0500-0900 GMT) and 1800 and 2200 (1500-1900 GMT).
The Greek Government is preparing for a key vote on fresh austerity measures, which will see further cuts and tax hikes.
The latest austerity measures will according to Prime Minister George Papandreou, get Greece “back on its feet” and are necessary for the country to secure its latest instalment of its emergency loan.
However, the austerity measures which have already kicked in have resulted in several cuts which have led to the unemployment rate soaring to more than 16%.
Meanwhile, it has just been revealed that French President Nicolas Sarkozy said his country’s banks will give Greece 30 years to get on top of its debt mountain by extending loans.