MARCUS WALKER And ALKMAN GRANITSAS
The Wall Street Journal
March 8, 2010
- A d v e r t i s e m e n t
Escalating strikes and street protests this week will test the Greek government’s ability to see through its austerity strategy. Despite fears of social unrest, most Greeks appear to accept that severe budget cuts are inevitable in the face of the country’s debt crisis.
Greek tax and court officials, sanitation workers and local-government staff are among the groups planning strikes and walkouts this week, culminating in a 24-hour general strike Thursday to protest the government’s latest spending cuts and tax increases.
The planned protests underline how Greece’s government is fighting on two fronts: To persuade international financial markets that the country can repay its ballooning debts, and its own population to accept painful belt-tightening.
Prime Minister George Papandreou continued his efforts to win international support with a visit to Washington on Monday, where he was due to meet Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Mr. Papandreou is due to meet President Barack Obama at the White House on Tuesday.