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Greek Lawmakers Pass Austerity Bill Despite Riots

Demonstrators congregate in front of the Greek parliament in Athens.
Greek lawmakers have passed an austerity bill that prompted violent protests on the streets of Athens, despite some dissent from one Socialist parliamentary deputy.

The new measures include pay and staff cuts in the civil service as well as pension cuts and tax hikes for all Greeks.

The bill was passed by a majority vote in the 300-member parliament.

Former Labor Minister Louka Katseli voted against one article that scales back collective bargaining rights.

She voted in favor of the overall bill, but Prime Minister George Papandreou still expelled her from the party's parliamentary group.

The move whittles down his parliamentary majority to 153.

The approval of the new legislation comes despite violent demonstrations against its provisions which left one person dead and 74 injured.

The austerity measures are required in order for Greece to receive an 8 billion-euro installment from its European Union and International Monetary Fund (IMF) bailout package and avoid bankruptcy.

compiled from agency reports

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