Greece Austerity Protests Turn Violent, General Strike Enters Second Day

Greece

First Posted: 10/20/11 11:06 AM ET Updated: 12/20/11 05:12 AM ET

ATHENS, Greece - Greek lawmakers have passed a deeply resented austerity bill that has led to violent protests on the streets of Athens, despite some dissent from one Socialist lawmaker.

The new measures include pay and staff cuts in the civil service as well as pension cuts and tax hikes for all Greeks. The bill passed by majority vote in the 300-member parliament.

Former Labor Minister Louka Katseli voted against one article that scales back collective labour bargaining rights. She voted in favour of the overall bill, but Prime Minister George Papandreou expelled her from the party's parliamentary group. The move whittles down his parliamentary majority to 153.

The vote came after violent demonstrations that left one person dead and 74 injured.

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Protestors clash with riot police during massive clashes in front of the Greek parliament on October 19, 2011. Greek unions on Wednesday launched a two-day general strike in an all-out effort to block a new austerity bill that parliament must pass this week to forestall a state bankruptcy. (LOUISA GOULIAMAKI/AFP/Getty Images)
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Filed by Ron Nurwisah  |