FACTBOX-Greek commentaries on anti-austerity protests

May 6 (BestGrowthStock) – Below are editorial comments from Greek
newspapers on Thursday after a protest march against the
government’s austerity deal with the EU and IMF turned violent,
resulting in the deaths of three people.

KATHIMERINI (centre-right)

“Can a society self-destruct? Of course it can and it is
certain that this will happen if we continue this way — when
the state and society allow some nihilist hooligans to burn the
city and murder three working citizens.

“When the leadership of the political opposition assumes a
populist stance without providing an answer to this simple
question: bankruptcy or support mechanism?

“When society, justifiably angry, descends to populism. When
a panicked government pours oil onto this fire.

“We are at the most critical point of our postwar history.
Whether we will self-destruct, or go bust in other words,
depends on our leadership but also on all of us.”

ELEFTHEROTYPIA (centre-left)

“The anger of working people at the economic austerity
measures that are being voted into law in parliament broke out
yesterday, in large rallies in Athens and other cities.
Everywhere it sent the message that the measures are unfair and
anti-social. The government must take it into serious
consideration and make amendments, even at the last minute, to
mitigate their harshness.
“Yesterday’s reaction by working people was expected and
inevitable. This is why more such reactions should be expected
as workers and pensioners confront an unprecedented assault on
their incomes and rights.

“The government insists on passing the measures on the
premise that the country is at risk of default. But the
injustice provokes anger. And these measures are unfair and
unilateral. The victims are again the same, mainly workers and
pensioners — the only ones not responsible for this situation.
The ones who are responsible remain unaffected.”

TO VIMA (centre-left)

“In the most tragic way Greece again became the centre of
global attention. The deaths of three workers sparked fears of
uncontrollable violence.

“No one can predict how things will unfold but what is
certain is that innocence was lost. From now on, no one will be
able to pretend ignorance as to where such behaviours may lead.

“The statement by the President of the Republic, that we are
at the edge of the abyss, is not an exaggeration. History will
judge us all.”

ELEFTHEROS TYPOS (right)

“They left Athens at the mercy of murderers.

“Three innocent, working Athenians lost their lives by
brutal murderers. In democratic regimes there is also the right
to work. This time again, police did not manage to disperse the
hoodlums. According to eyewitnesses, they were walking unchecked
on both sidewalks of Stadiou street and they were left free to
impose their own law, the law of the jungle. Really, apart from
condolences, what else will authorities utter?”

TA NEA (centre-left)

“The glory of democracy is that it assures everyone’s right
to express ideas, without limits. Put simply, in democratic
regimes freedom of speech prevails. Yesterday’s tragedy in the
centre of Athens took place because democratic rights were
trampled on. A protest march was subjected to violence.

“Where Greece finds itself today, no government can reject
the demands imposed by its lenders. It could perhaps make the
criterion of social justice more evident. This is what
protesters were demanding yesterday but the gruesome acts
overshadowed this.”

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(Reporting by George Georgiopoulos)

FACTBOX-Greek commentaries on anti-austerity protests