Greek protester clash with police

Greek police fired teargas to disperse anti-austerity protesters hurling stones and petrol bombs on the day of a general strike that brought much of the near-bankrupt country to a standstill.

It was the second time in three weeks that Greek workers had walked off the job, with Thursday's strike aimed at showing EU leaders meeting in Brussels that new wage and pension cuts will only worsen their plight after five years of recession.

More than 30,000 protesters gathered in central Athens as most business and public sector activity ground to a halt at the start of the 24-hour strike called by the country's two biggest labor unions, ADEDY and GSEE. Tensions mounted when a small group of protesters began throwing pieces of marble, bottles and petrol bombs at police barricading part of the square in front of parliament, prompting riot police to fire several rounds of teargas to disperse them.

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