In central Athens, they carried the flags of their Mediterannean neighbours; those who’ve witnessed the Greek economy break down; countries now enduring their own deep austerity.
After last week’s two day national strike, Greek workers staged a short stoppage and demonstration.
Both of the main private and public sector unions marched on the city’s main square. Union leaders called for an urgent U-turn from Brussels.
“We are demanding a change of policy in all of Europe that will invest in the real economy, that will support growth and viable employment,” said Kostas Tsikrikas, President of the Civil Servants Trade Union.
Another union leader warned that European leaders couldn’t ignore the impact of austerity measures.
“Only when all of Europe and all of its workers wake up, will they be forced confront the problem, and see why people are on the streets. They don’t seem to be at all concerned why people are out on the streets,” said Stavros Doumas, President of the Finance Minister Employees’ Union.
In the last week, MPs have passed a fourth round of austerity measures. Now living through their fifth year of recession, Greek workers continue to see their pay and pensions slashed as the cost of living skyrockets.