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June 17, 2011

Greece: Still in economic crisis

Over the last decade, Greece went on a debt binge that came crashing to an end in late 2009, provoking an economic crisis. Over the next two years, Greece relied on bailout money from its richer neighbors and implemented austerity measures meant to cut its bloated deficit and restore investor confidence. But by June 2011 it found itself deep in a second recession, near the end of its cash and facing a political crisis, as anti-austerity demonstrations grew. Violence broke out this week during one of those demonstrations, injuring 11, as the frustration continued to grow and no quick fixes emerged. Today, Greece's Prime Minister George Papandreou, in a broad cabinet reshuffle, appointed a new Finance Minister, Evangelos Venizelos, in hopes of turning his country around. - Paula Nelson (43 photos total)

A banner reads "yes to the society no to the power" during a rally against plans for new austerity measures, in Thessaloniki, Greece, June 15, 2011. A 24-hour strike by Greece's largest labor unions was to cripple public services, as the Socialist government began a legislative battle to push through last-ditch cost cutting reforms that would exceed its own term in office. Demonstrators have camped outside parliament since May 25, 2011. (Nikolas Giakoumidis/Associated Press)

A demonstrator confronts riot police near the Greek parliament in Athens, June 15, 2011. Tens of thousands of grassroots activists and unionists vowed to converge on Athens' central Syntagma (Constitution) Square. (Pascal Rossignol/Reuters) #

A demonstrator confronts riot police outside the Greek parliament in Athens June 15, 2011. Prime Minister George Papandreou prepared to push through a new five-year campaign of tax hikes, spending cuts and selloffs of state property to continue receiving aid from the European Union and International Monetary Fund and avoid default. (Yannis Behrakis/Reuters) #

Demonstrators wave flags near the Greek parliament in Athens, June 15, 2011.(John Kolesidis/Reuters) #

Greece's Prime Minister George Papandreou (C) and General Secretary of PASOK's national council Nikos Athanasakis are accompanied by two security agents as they leave a meeting with Greece's President Karolos Papoulias in Athens, June 15, 2011. (Yiorgos Karahalis/Reuters) #

Greek riot police officers chase protesters amidst tear gas thrown by the police, during clashes in Athens' main Syntagma square, June 15, 2011. Hundreds of protesters clashed with riot police in central Athens Wednesday as a major anti-austerity rally degenerated into violence outside Parliament. (Lefteris Pitarakis/Associated Press) #

A masked youth walks beside a burning barricade during clashes in Athens' central Syntagma (Constitution) Square, June 15, 2011. Angry youths hurled petrol bombs at Greece's Finance Ministry and tens of thousands of protesters marched on parliament. (Yannis Behrakis/Reuters) #

Riot police arrest a protestor during a demonstration near the parliament in the center of Athens. Thousands of demonstrators besieged the Greek parliament, June 15, 2011. (Angelos TzortzinisAFP/Getty Images) #

Protesters clash with riot police during a general strike against government austerity plans in Athens, June 15, 2011. (Alkis Konstantinidis/AFP/Getty Images) #

Protesters protect themselves from tear gas thrown inside a subway station, June 15, 2011. (Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images) #

A protestor evades riot police, June 15, 2011 during a demonstration near the parliament in the center of Athens. Thousands of demonstrators besieged the Greek parliament leaving at least a dozen injured ahead of a critical reform vote in parliament. (Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images) #

Protestors clash with riot police, June 15, 2011 during a demonstration near the parliament in the center of Athens. (Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images) #

Protesters clash with riot police officers during a general strike against government austerity plans in Athens, June 15, 2011. (Angelos Tzortzinis/AFP/Getty Images) #

Protestors react to tear gas, June 15, 2011. (Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images) #

Protesters clash with riot police, June 15, 2011. Thousands of protesters ringed the Greek parliament building as the government tried to push through its emergency package. (Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images) #

Greek riot police officers walk amidst a cloud of tear gas thrown by police, during clashes with protesters in Athens' main Syntagma square, June 15, 2011. (Kostas Tsironis/Associated Press) #

Paramedics evacuate an injured protestor at Syntagma square in front of the Greek Parliament in central Athens, prior to a rally against plans for new austerity measures, June 15, 2011. (Dimitri Messinis/Associated Press) #

Protestors try to remove a fence protecting the parliament, June 15, 2011 during a demonstration in the center of Athens.(Louisa Gouliamaki/AFP/Getty Images) #

A protestor holds rocks, June 15, 2011 during a demonstration in the center of Athens. Thousands of demonstrators besieged the Greek parliament in protest of new austerity measures. (Angelos Tzortzinis/AFP/Getty Images) #

A protester runs next to a tear gas canister, June 15, 2011. (Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images) #

Protesters run away from tear gas during a 24-hour general strike in Athens, June 15, 2011. Violence left at least a dozen injured. (Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images) #

Police stand behind a fence protecting the parliament, June 15, 2011. (Louisa Gouliamaki/AFP/Getty Images) #

Protesters try to break the fence outside the Greek parliament during a 24-hour general strike in Athens, June 15, 2011. Offices were closed and public transport on land and sea across Greece was seriously disrupted. (Louisa Gouliamaki/AFP/Getty Images) #

A protester shouts at police guarding the Greek parliament in Athens, June 15, 2011. Greek police fired tear gas at demonstrators as tens of thousands of grassroots activists and unionists vowed to converge on Athens' central Syntagma (Constitution) Square. (Yannis Behrakis/Reuters) #

Demonstrators shout and confront riot police near the Greek Parliament in central Athens, June 15, 2011. Riot police used tear gas Wednesday to disperse groups of youths hurling firebombs and rocks.(Petros Giannakouris/Associated Press) #

Greek riot police officers arrest a protester during a general strike. Offices were closed and public transport on land and sea across Greece was seriously disrupted as a mass general strike got under way. (Panagiotis Tzamaros/AFP/Getty Images) #

Greek riot police officers run after protesters during a general strike against government austerity plans, in Athens, June 15, 2011. (Panagiotis Tzamaros/AFP/Getty Images) #

Greek riot police officers arrest protesters. (Panagiotis Tzamaros/AFP/Getty Images) #

Protesters move against riot police officers. Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images) #

Riot police stand behind their shields during a 24-hour general strike in Athens, June 15, 2011. (Louisa Gouliamaki/AFP/Getty Images) #

Protesters kick away tear gas fired by riot police during a 24-hours general strike in Athens, June 15, 2011. (Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images) #

A demonstrator rests after being injured during massive clashes at the central Athens Syntagma square, June 15, 2011. (Angelos Tzortzinis/AFP/Getty Images) #

Riot police grapple with a demonstrator near the Greek parliament, June 15, 2011. (John Kolesidis/Reuters) #

Riot police arrest a protestor, June 15, 2011. Thousands of demonstrators besieged the Greek parliament. (Angelos Tzortzinis/AFP/Getty Images) #

Protestors clash with riot police, June 15, 2011 during a demonstration against new austerity measures. (Panagiotis Tzamaros/AFP/Getty Images) #

Police arrest a demonstrator during massive clashes at the central Athens Syntagma Square. (Louisa Gouliamaki/AFP/Getty Images) #

A protester clashes with a police officer in Athens' central Syntagma (Constitution) Square.(Yannis Behrakis/Reuters) #

Protestors fight with riot police during massive clashes. (Louisa Gouliamaki/AFP/Getty Images) #

Protestors clash as George Papandreou prepared to push through a new five-year campaign of tax hikes, spending cuts and selloffs of state property to continue receiving aid from the European Union and International Monetary Fund and avoid default. (Pascal Rossignol/Reuters) #

Protestors shout towards tear gas-throwing riot police during massive clashes at the central Athens Syntagma Square, June 15, 2011. (Louisa Gouliamaki/AFP/Getty Images) #

A demonstrator throws stones at riot police at Syntagma Square in front of the Greek Parliament. (Lefteris Pitarakis/Associated Press) #

Demonstrators and riot police clash. (Milos Bicanski/Getty Images) #

A protester armed with a wooden stick stands beside burning barricades in Athens' central Syntagma (Constitution) Square. (Yannis Behrakis/Reuters) #



 
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