Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Greece bailout: Protesters gather for Athens rally

Protests have taken place outside parliament in Greece, as MPs considered emergency laws after a 130bn-euro (£110bn; $170bn) bailout deal.

Rallies were called by the two main unions but the turnout was lower than expected because of the damp weather.

Parliament has a week to approve 3.3bn euros in spending cuts tied to the EU/IMF deal.

In a separate development, credit agency Fitch further downgraded Greece's rating from CCC to C.

Although no vote is expected in parliament until Thursday, key parts of the EU/IMF bailout will be discussed at committee level, including the debt writedown by holders of Greek bonds known as the private sector involvement (PSI).

Another measure being debated is a health bill that would further slash state spending, reports say.

A week ago, Athens saw its worst rioting in years, as MPs passed a series of deeply unpopular austerity measures. Read More