Greece is facing major disruption on Tuesday as unions begin a 48-hour general strike before a parliamentary vote on harsh austerity measures demanded in return for international rescue loans.
Protest rallies in Athens are due to converge on parliament as industrial action called in protest against tax hikes was expected to disrupt or halt most public services.
More than 5,000 police have been deployed to guard central Athens where anti-austerity demonstrations earlier this month ended in scenes of violence as protesters clashed with riot officers.
“We expect a dynamic and massive participation in the strike and the march to the centre of Athens. We will have 48 hours of working people, unemployed, young people in the streets,” Spyros Papaspyros, leader of public sector union ADEDY, told Reuters.
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