Greek workers plan nationwide strike

Greek police confront a teachers’ protest rally. (File photo)

Greek public sector workers, including teachers and doctors, plan to go on a nationwide strike to protest planned civil service cuts and mandatory transfers.

While the country™s top public sector union, ADEDY, has called for a 48-hour walkout, a partial private-sector strike is also reported to be in the making.

Heeding the union™s call to strike, public sector workers are scheduled to hold protest rallies across Greece on Wednesday and Thursday.

Workers in the country say that older and more vulnerable staff will be targeted by the cuts, adding to the already record unemployment rate of nearly 28 percent.

The government, however, insists that it must reform the nation™s public sector, which has grown too large for decades.

The latest call for another general strike was prompted by a government plan to place 25,000 civil servants on reduced salary before reassigning and even dismissing them.

The government has announced plans to cut 15,000 positions by 2015.

The development comes as Greek Foreign Minister Evangelos Venizelos warned in a Tuesday interview that his nation could not suffer further austerity cuts amid discussions for an additional third bailout package.

œWe cannot think about new cuts to pensions and wages. From 2010 to 2012, Greek incomes have fallen by over 35 percent, something that is unique and unacceptable during peace times,” said Venizelos.

The planned work stoppage comes as Greece™s international creditors hold talks in Athens.

The job cuts announced by the Greek government are part of the bailout conditions for the next 1-billion-euro tranche of Greece’s loan set by the so-called lending troika – the International Monetary Fund, the European Central Bank and the European Commission.

The European nation has so far received two major aid packages totaling to nearly 240 billion euros. It will reportedly need an additional 10 billion euros to cover a funding gap.

Meanwhile, Greek teachers at state high schools began a five-day rolling strike over the cuts on Monday.


Copyright: Press TV