Acropolis closed again in temporary strike

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Acropolis closed again in temporary strike

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The Acropolis has been closed for four hours because of a walkout by workers in Athens. It is further proof that the wave of strikes to hit Greece is affecting tourism.

This is the third time that the site has been closed in the past six months. Employees are striking because of overdue pay and a government announcement that contract employees would be laid off.

“What other way is there for us to fight for and defend our rights? What can we do?” said Yannis Mavrikopoulos, president of the union which represents guards at archaeological sites.

Tourists who turned up at the gates were moderately annoyed but took the inconvenience in their stride.

“You come here to see the big monuments and to be a tourist of the history and, if you can’t do that, it’s not the best thing in the world,” said Nicky Caldwell from Columbus, Ohio.

The Greek government has been on a vigorous campaign to attract tourism this year after the strikes and some violent protests.

But it cannot protect the industry from the effects of its tough economic reform programme to rein in the country’s debt, including cuts in pay and pensions.

Visitors have also been affected by disruption to planes and ferries.