Greek workers are to strike for three hours tomorrow in response to the government’s intensification of its austerity measures. George Papandreou, the prime minister, announced yesterday that he would cut public sector workers’ annual bonuses by 30 percent, increase VAT by 2 percent and freeze state-funded pensions.
The private and public sector unions have called the strike and a demonstration at the parliament. MPs vote on the programme. An all-day general strike against cuts paralysed the country on Wednesday of last week.
“There is tremendous pressure on the union leaderships,” said Panos Garganas, the editor of the Workers Solidarity newspaper in Greece. “Workers who have been sacked by Olympic Airlines have occupied part of the ministry of finance today.
“The union leaders are now discussing bringing forward by a week the public sector strikes planned for 16 March. The pace is quickening.”
Greece is in revolt against the government and the European Union’s plans. Pensioners protested in Athens this week, while taxi drivers held a 48-hour strike.