Police use tear gas against Greek protesters

Greek police have used tear gas against the protesters. Clashes happened during the rallying of Greek unions in central Athens on Wednesday in a new protest over the austerity measures applied as the government struggles to avoid default.

Greek police have used tear gas against the protesters, RT's Sara Firth reports from Athens.

A group of young people began throwing stones at the law enforcers and the police responded with tear gas.

Some people required medical attention, Sara says. Ambulances have moved in to the Parliament building.

People are lying on the ground receiving medical treatment.

Public services in Greece have been disrupted as civil servants and public utility workers have declared a 24-hour strike against pay cuts.

All flights to and from Greece are grounded as strike is in full swing in Athens on Wednesday.

Civil servants also walked off the job for 24-hour strike protesting plans to suspend staff on partial pay.

The Greek government recently approved a measure to put 30,000 civil servers on reserve, which will mean a reduction in their salary for a year and the possibility of dismissal at the end of that period.

Many Greeks have already lost their jobs and are struggling to pay constantly rising taxes as the government tries to plug enormous deficits in the budget.

Air traffic controllers have joined the strike and cancelled all flights at Athens International Airport beginning from Tuesday 2100 GMT (midnight local time).

Public transport workers, lawyers, public hospital doctors and dock workers have also declared they will join the strike action on Wednesday.

This nationwide protest comes after eurozone finance chiefs postponed Greece's next bailout .

Athens says the next tranche of 8 billion euros needs to be released by mid-November or the country will run out of money.

Greece had previously said it would start running out of money in mid-October if it did not get the bailout loan.

­Thomas Thygesen from SEB Merchant Banking told RT that most historical experiences suggest that tightening fiscal policy in the midst of a recession is a futile exercise.

“I do not think it is going to help. But we have to keep in mind it is not just for the benefit of the Greek deficit situation, there is also a signaling effect here – to show other countries that it has a big cost if you do not mind your economics well,” he explained.

According to Thygesen, if a default happens in an uncontrolled way it could be a very destructive event.

“If there are no defensive preparations made in advance it could cost the banks quite dearly,” he concluded.

­Nick Skrekas, an economic analyst and international lawyer, said there have been 24-hour combined strikes between the private and public sector unions happening once every month, but the number of protesters over the past several months has dwindled, and there is not so much anger and frustration against the austerity measures now.

“There was a lot of anger, but people understand that if they wish to be in the eurozone, if they don’t want to take a dramatic step and unilaterally default, that may be suffering some of these things in low forms just have to happen,” he stated.