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Angry Greeks demand end to austerity reforms

Wednesday, May 17, 2017 - 01:41

Thousands of Greeks have walked off their jobs and marched through central Athens in protest against continued austerity measures demanded by international lenders in exchange for bailout funds. Kate King reports.

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For more than six years Greeks have been living under tough austerity measures - once again their anger has spilled onto the streets - No more they say (SOUNDBITE) (Greek) PROTESTER SOULA TRIANDAFYLLIDOU, A PENSIONER, SAYING: "This robbing from the workers and the pensioners has gone far enough. They have sunk us to the lowest levels." Thousands walked off their jobs marching through central Athens protesting against the latest proposed reforms. On Thursday the government will vote on the measures demanded by international lenders in exchange for the latest instalment of a third bailout. It's hoping to get debt relief as a reward after an EU meeting next week. SOUNDBITE (English) SENIOR FX STRATEGIST, RABOBANK, JANE FOLEY, SAYING: "The fact that that topic is there is being pressured for a while by the IMF as been as something that Greece needs. That could be something that could lessen the blow for the Greek economy in the next couple of years." Athens needs the funds to repay an 8 billion debt in July. But in order to receive the aid it's being asked to make more cuts to pensions and reduce tax-free allowance on income. One in four Greeks are already unemployed and it jumps to 48 percent among youth. (SOUNDBITE (Greek) GENERAL CONFEDERATION OF TRADESMEN AND CRAFTSMEN PRESIDENT GEORGE KAVATHAS SAYING: "The crisis cannot be solved with a new bailout. Growth cannot be made to order, it needs significant measures to be implemented. The economy is deteriorating, and so is society." In 2015 prime minister Alexis Tsipras pledged to stop the cuts, now it seems there's a lot more riding on that promise.

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Angry Greeks demand end to austerity reforms

Wednesday, May 17, 2017 - 01:41