Athens without metro or tram as unionists plan marches

Commuters and motorists in the Greek capital are in for a hassle on Tuesday, as there will be no metro or tram service from 9 a.m. until noon, and key thoroughfares will be closed by two protest rallies taking place in downtown Athens.

The three-hour transport strike is part of broader action announced by unionists to coincide with a hearing at the Council of State on a motion challenging a recent law regulating the operation of labor unions.

According to the unionists, who will be gathering in front of the court on Panepistimiou Street at 9.30 a.m., the law is designed to curtail the independence of unions and their right to strike.

Before that rally lets up, members of the Panhellenic Federation of Public Hospital Employees (POEDIN) are planning to gather in front of the Health Ministry near Omonia Square at 11.30 a.m. and to march to Syntagma, where Parliament will be voting on a bill that seeks, among other provisions, to privatize a part of Greece’s primary healthcare system.