- Category: International
- Created on Saturday, 07 February 2009 22:38
- Written by AP
doug shared this with us a couple weeks ago. But the information is still interesting -- after the intense resistance of youth in Greek cities after the police killing of an anarchist youth. The involvement of broad strata in colision with the government give a sense of the depth of crisis for the Greek ruling class -- and a sense of the kinds of ripples of crisis moving across Europe.
Farmers cut Greece into three as protests intensify
ATHENS (AFP) — Jan. 26 -- Greek farmers effectively cut the country into three Monday as they blocked roads south-west of Athens in a six-day dispute with the government over the low prices for cotton, corn and wheat.
Hundreds of farmers used their tractors to block the Isthmus of Corinth, one of the two road access points to the southern Peloponnese peninsula.
Livestock farmers from Greece's Macedonia region also joined the protest demanding higher prices for their goods.
Similar protests have been taking place in the north and centre of the country since January 20, where farmers still occupy key junctions on the Athens-Thessaloniki highway and other major roads.
Border routes to Bulgaria and Turkey are also blocked and freight traffic has slowed to a trickle, with the protesters only making exceptions for perishable goods and medical emergencies.
Bulgaria's government urged the European Union to help reopen border crossings that have been shut for nearly a week by the Greek farmers.
Traffic across the border with Bulgaria has slowed to a trickle as Greek farmers have all but sealed off the three border crossings between the two countries.
In a letter to the head of the European Commission's Transport and Energy Directorate, Matthias Ruete, Bulgaria's transport ministry appealed for "urgent help to ensure at least one permanent transport corridor for Bulgarian freight and passenger vehicles travelling across Greek territory."
It also called on Brussels "to bring to the attention of the Greek authorities that the current situation infringes on the rights of other citizens of the EU and the principles of the common market.
Greek Agriculture Minister Sotiris Hatzigakis said Sunday the government would honour its promise to provide a 500-million-euro (646-million-dollar) support package to the country's agricultural sector
But farmers said they already expected the aid package to be paid out and want prices adjusted product by product, region by region.
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