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Evicted Greek TV channel goes on air from street (VIDEO)

An Athens street was turned into a live studio by employees of Greece’s former state TV broadcaster, after riot police evicted them from their offices, which the journalists had refused to leave, despite the government shutting the channel down.

It took a microphone, a camera and some lights on a street to put Greece’s ERT, which officially has not existed since June, back on the on air Thursday. The channel’s news anchor, Aglaia Kiritsi, hosted a show from outside the former headquarters of the broadcaster, cordoned off by police.   

Around 500 Greeks were out there, too, showing their support for the former ERT employees.

“We are here, ERT employees continue to work! Over the next few days we’ll find ways to produce radio and TV programs with the consistency and professionalism that has characterized our work throughout this time,” Euronews reported journalists’ representative Machi Nikolara as saying.

All 2,700 ERT staff members were fired five months ago, when the Greek government announced the closure of the state broadcaster, explaining that it was part of the country’s austerity program.

The journalists refused to accept the closure or to leave the building. The rebellious journalists continued to work unpaid, streaming their programs via the internet.

Riot police clash with people gathered outside the headquarters of former public broadcaster ERT in Athens on November 7, 2013. (AFP Photo / Kostis Ntantamis)

Eventually, riot police this week forced the journalists out of the channel’s offices.

Following the eviction of the journalists, the Greek leftist opposition party Syriza called for a no-confidence vote in the government.

"The government has deceived the people," The Wall Street Journal cited Syriza leader Alexis Tsipras as saying while introducing the no-confidence motion. "This catastrophic path must stop now and we have a duty to do it."

The move by the opposition might put at risk the prospect of more financial aid from the EU. Representatives of the so-called troika – the European Commission, the International Monetary Fund and the European Central Bank – are currently in Greece to assess its costs-cutting efforts.

The motion is "like a stab in the back to our country, at a time when the government is negotiating with its lenders and all its attention should be focused there," said Simos Kedikoglou, a spokesman for the government, which is formed of the right-wing party new Democracy and the centrist, former socialist party PASOK.

Greece has promised its creditors to sack 4,000 public sector workers by the end of 2013. The country’s population reacted to the news of the latest austerity cuts with a 24-hour strike on Wednesday.