Friday May 19, 2017
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Protesters burn a flag with the logo of Greek Alpha Bank outside the Greek parliament in Athens on May 18, 2017, during a demonstration on the sidelines of a voting on new austerity measures. — AFP picProtesters burn a flag with the logo of Greek Alpha Bank outside the Greek parliament in Athens on May 18, 2017, during a demonstration on the sidelines of a voting on new austerity measures. — AFP picATHENS, May 19 — Greek police fired tear gas yesterday as a thousands-strong demonstration in Athens against new austerity cuts turned violent with some hooded youths throwing Molotov cocktails.

Police said more than 10,000 people took part in the protest outside parliament in the heart of the Greek capital just as the chamber was set to debate the new pension cuts and lower tax breaks — applicable in 2019 and 2020 respectively.

The parliament is set to pass the bill in a vote expected around midnight which Athens hopes will help it gain a pledge of debt relief and loan disbursements by the country’s EU-IMF creditors this month.

Live television images showed hooded youngsters lobbing firebombs at the police in the central Syntagma Square and throwing projectiles.

On Wednesday, at least 18,000 people demonstrated in Athens and the second city Thessaloniki in union-sponsored protests against the bill. — AFP

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