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General Strike: Thousands March in Central Athens Against Government Bill

Despite the cloudy and rainy weather, thousands of people marched in central Athens on Tuesday morning, participating in the 24-hour general strike declared by the country’s largest labor unions.

Athens buses, trams, and the Metro line 1 (from Piraeus to Kifissia) came to a complete halt beginning at 6 o’clock in the morning.

Private sector labor unions joined the strike action, announced by the civil servants union federation ADEDY and the Athens – Piraeus labour centers, against the provisions of the proposed legislation which the conservative government intends to enact soon.

The bill deals with a series of labor issues, from the introduction of an electronic voting system for members of unions to the reduction of paper-based posters calling for strikes, among many others.

Most unions disagree with a series of other technical and political aspects of the bill, which is expected to come before the House in the next week.

Greek journalists are also participating in the strike, since their union ESIEA and associated mass media-sector trade unions are protesting against measures included in the government’s bill which affect labor and state insurance rights and entitlements.

The strike is supported by all left-wing Parliamentary Greek parties, including the main opposition SYRIZA party, the Communists and the MeRA25 party, led by the former Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis.

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