Clashes in Greece, parliament expected to approve bill

June 30, 2011 07:46

ATHENS - Greek police clashed with protesters outside parliament in the early hours of Thursday ahead of a vote expected to approve a final austerity bill needed to secure international aid and avert a debt default.

The government of Prime Minister George Papandreou, which won a first vote on Wednesday by 155 to 138 votes, expects to pass the second and final bill covering 28 billion euros in tax hikes, spending targets and privatizations agreed as part of an EU/IMF bailout.

Parliament resumes debate at 9:30 a.m. (0630 GMT) and the decisive vote is not expected before 2 p.m. (1100 GMT). Before the debate, it had not yet been decided whether more than one vote would be needed to pass it.

"I expect that the MPs who backed the mid-term plan will also vote for the implementation law," government spokesman Ilias Mosialos said in a television interview.

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