(Worthy News) - Greek lawmakers voted overwhelmingly early Thursday to approve a harsh austerity bill demanded by bailout creditors, despite significant dissent from members of Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras' left-wing party, Fox News reported.
The bill has fueled anger in the governing Syriza party and led to a revolt by party members against the prime minister, who has insisted the deal forged after a marathon weekend eurozone summit was the best he could do to prevent Greece from catastrophically crashing out of Europe's joint currency.
The bill, which imposes sweeping tax hikes and spending cuts, was approved with 229 votes in favor, 64 against and six abstentions -- and with the support of three pro-European opposition parties. [ Source ]
Clashes break out as Greek lawmakers debate austerity bill
Rioters hurled petrol bombs at police who responded with tear gas as an anti-austerity demonstration outside parliament turned violent Wednesday, while Greek lawmakers began debating contentious measures needed to start negotiations on a new bailout and avoid financial collapse.
Groups of youths among the more than 12,000 protesters smashed storefronts and set at least one vehicle alight. The clashes were the first significant protest violence since the left-wing Syriza government came to power in January promising to repeal bailout austerity. Police said at least 50 people were detained.
The protest was timed to coincide with the start of debate on the bill, which includes consumer tax increases and pension reforms that will condemn Greeks to years of more economic hardship. [ Source ]