Riots have broken out in the Greek capital of Athens as thousands of people began protesting in response to skyrocketing inflation rates.
Rioters threw Molotov cocktails and rocks at Greek police officers on Wednesday in the midst of yet another general strike, as workers walked off the job for 24 hours demanding pay hikes to compensate for the increase in the cost of living caused by inflation.
As a result of the strike, public transport ground to a halt — including ferry transportation to Greece’s numerous small islands. Public schools were also forced to shut down, and even some government hospitals had to run at a reduced capacity due to staffing shortages, according to Euronews.
“We’re demanding an appropriate increase in salaries as our wages have been hit radically by such high energy prices and living costs,” Dimitris Georgiou, a telecoms worker said per The Guardian.
“If you’re taking home €800 a month, it’s now down to €500 with all the hikes,” Georgiou added. “The government has handed out subsidies but in effect, a lot of those state funds have gone to companies. It’s vital that other support measures are introduced this winter.”
Protests are erupting outside parliament in Athens, Greece. Demonstrators are enraged by soaring energy and food prices. Take a look:pic.twitter.com/MNeVTMTSay
— Steve Hanke (@steve_hanke) November 10, 2022
Clashes between rioters and riot police were seen throughout the protests across Athens and Thessaloniki — as rioters were filmed throwing Molotov cocktails and rocks at police officers, who responded by firing tear gas and stun grenades.
There have been no reports of any series of injuries as of yet.
Greece has been suffering from one of the highest inflation levels in Europe, as the inflation rate climbed to 12.1% in September causing the price of goods — especially food — to skyrocket.
The cost of energy has been the major driving force behind soaring inflation. According to Breitbart News, natural gas prices in Greece increased by a shocking 332% over the last year, while the price of electricity rose 30.5% and heating oil rose 65.1%.
Greece is not the only country facing labor disputes. Other European nations — including France, Germany, Spain and the UK — also experienced strikes.
London Underground strike to go ahead after talks over jobs and pensions fail https://t.co/aZZ1bsr9Ix
— BBC News (UK) (@BBCNews) November 8, 2022