Greeks Start 48-Hour Strike

    Image #: 16851231    epa03099088 A protester shouts slogans in front of the Greek Parliament in Athens, Greece, 10 February 2012, during a rally against the new austerity measures. A nationwide 48-hour strike for 10-11 February was called on 09 February by Greece's two main umbrella federations GSEE and ADEDY, representing the private and public sectors respectively, in protest of the new memorandum agreed with the troika of the European Union, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the European Central Bank (ECB).  EPA/SIMELA PANTZARTZI /LANDOV

    Simela Pantzartzi, EPA / Landov

    Just as the European Union breathed a sigh of relief that Greek politicians reached a deal to pass austerity measures needed for an EU bailout and avoid default in March, angry Greek workers on Friday kicked off a protest against new measures in a 48-hour-long general strike all across the country. Greek Prime Minister Lucas Papademos plans to cut private-sector wages by more than 20 percent, lay off thousands of government workers, and cut federal spending—which labor unions condemn the actions as "a tombstone" for the country. Most public transportation will be shut down thanks to the strike, and all government offices, schools, and hospitals will be operating on emergency staff. Despite the unpopularity of the austerity measures, the deal is expected to pass the Greek Parliament on Friday.

    Read it at The New York Times