Greece/Civil unrest: protesters clash with police over austerity measures

Clashes erupted outside the Greek Ministry of Finance in Athens on Thursday between riot police and protesters voicing their dissent on the government’s endeavour to cut on the budget. Police fired tear gas to disperse a crowd of about 500 protesters who attempted to barge into the ministry building. Later on the evening new clashes occurred outside the parliament building.

Greece had a meeting with delegates from the International Monetary Fund and the European Union earlier that day on securing a multi-billion-Euro aid deal that would provide relief to the country’s debt. The expected measures, which includes raise in sales taxes and scraping bonuses and pensions, would yield around €23 billion euros. Protesters however, believe it would lead to recession; and the trade unions have called a general strike for May 5. The government on the other hand, says it needs the deal by May 19 to avoid a devastating debt default.