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Anti-austerity protest held in Portugal

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Thousands crowd Lisbon's main Liberdade avenue during a demonstration Saturday, Oct. 1, 2011.

Thousands of protesters have demonstrated in Portugal against the adopted austerity measures and declining living standards linked to the country’s massive bailout.

The country’s largest trade union confederation, the General Confederation of the Portuguese Workers (CGTP), organized the rally in the capital city, Lisbon and the second largest city of Porto on Saturday, AP reported.

The marches would prove to be “a great day in Portuguese workers’ struggle against government policies that border on the inhuman,” the CGTP said.

Portugal had to ask for a 78 billion euro (USD 106 billion) bailout earlier this year to avoid bankruptcy. In return, it has agreed to adopt a raft of austerity measures, which according to the protesters, would hurt the ordinary citizen hardest.

“The measures taken by the government and by the troika (referring to officials from the International Monetary Fund, European Central Bank and European Commission) always punish the same people and make things better for big companies and the employer,” said Aisa Joao, a nurse.

“We are here to show our indignation and fight for a decent life,” another protester said during the demonstration in Lisbon.


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