(INDYRADIO 04-16-2013) Although precious little has appeared in the Media, all of Greece is protesting in spite of a bailout approved Monday. Not even The Economist, organizers of the meeting where the deal was made, reported the massive reaction throughout Greece. Their top story was about the bombing in Boston. New York Times coverage did not appear in Google News, except by way of a 3rd party.
More than US$11 Billion in loans were released after Monday's agreement with the European Commission, International Monetary Fund and European Central Bank. The loans to be made available include US$7.86 Billion that was originally to be disbursed at the beginning of the year, along with an additional US$3.6 Billion that was originally scheduled for March. In exchange for the release of these loans, Greece will impose conditions suitable to the "Troika" representing the lenders, thus the accelerating protest. This is part of a larger deal valued at US$310 Billion, according to the NYT. http://www.theday.com/article/20130416/BIZ03/304169936/-1/BIZ
Although Greece has been inflamed with austerity protests since November, when the 39th anniversary of N17 was observed, the protests against this deal began last month as work on the current bailout deal began. On Friday, a contingent of homeless Greeks marched to parliament, but no news arrived until Monday when reported by France24 along with some background:
"The cutbacks and tax hikes that the Greek government has implemented at the behest of the troika have had an immense impact on the Greek economy and society. Greek GDP has fallen by more than 22 percent overall since 2008 as austerity measures have eroded domestic demand as salaries and pensions have been cut. Unemployment has shot up to 26 percent of the workforce."
Prime Minister Antonis Samaras announced the deal on TV:
"Fiscal performance is on track to meet the program targets, and the government is committed to fully implement all agreed fiscal measures for 2013-2014 that are not yet in place," he said, adding that the release of a loan installment of 2.8 billion euros that had been due in March "could be agreed soon by the euro area member states."
This didn't quell the protests. No travel will be possible between the Greek Isles today while ferrymen remain on strike, and students continue to agitate on the campus of the Polytechic. Their website continues, mostly in Greek, here - http://indymedia.squat.gr/
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