Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE OBSERVERS

Muslims and Christians clean up Bangui, and violence spirals out of control in Algeria's Gardaia

Read more

FASHION

Who's next in Paris, an event with international ready-to-wear and fashion accessories collections

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Is there such thing as 'telegenic' victims of war?

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

2014-07-22 07:21 IN THE FRENCH PRESS

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Michel Sidibé, UNAIDS Executive Director

Read more

TALKING EUROPE

Dalia Grybauskaite, President of the Republic of Lithuania

Read more

WEB NEWS

Online scammers exploit MH17 crash

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Too many graphic images from Gaza ?

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Gaza: online reactions

Read more

  • Hollande says French warship delivery will ‘depend on Russia’s attitude’

    Read more

  • Israel identifies ‘missing’ soldier in Gaza

    Read more

  • Ukraine rebels release bodies, black boxes from flight MH17

    Read more

  • A call for harmony in riot-hit ‘Little Jerusalem’ Paris suburb

    Read more

  • Widodo poised to become Indonesian president

    Read more

  • An ‘explosion of violence’: French press reacts to Gaza protests

    Read more

  • Notorious ‘VIP’ prison in Paris closed for renovations

    Read more

  • Christians in Iraq's Mosul face execution or exodus

    Read more

  • Scores killed as Libyan militias fight over airport

    Read more

  • Ukraine football players refuse to return home after friendly in France

    Read more

  • China steps up communist education to guard against ‘moral decline’

    Read more

  • French rugby stars attacked with machetes and swords

    Read more

  • Hollande announces new military operation in West Africa

    Read more

  • Kristoff wins Tour’s flat Stage 15

    Read more

Europe

Thousands march against budget cuts and IMF bailout

Latest update : 2010-11-28

Ireland entered the final hours of negotiations for emergency EU and IMF loans on Saturday, as thousands of demonstrators marched through the streets of Dublin against the deal.

AFP - About 50,000 Irish people took to the streets Saturday to oppose savage cutbacks needed to secure an international bailout, police said, piling pressure on the debt-laden nation's embattled government.
  
Waving placards reading "Eire not for sale, not to the IMF" and "there is a better, fairer way", the crowd marched through Dublin in a mass protest against the austerity package announced Wednesday by Prime Minister Brian Cowen.
  

Source: The Irish Times

The four-year package will cut the minimum wage and slash 25,000 public sector jobs as the one time "Celtic Tiger" economy tries to pay off a huge budget deficit.
  
Cowen's government say the measures, along with a budget due on December 7, are a pre-condition to securing European Union and International Monetary Fund  loans worth a reported 85 billion euros (113 billion dollars).
  
EU finance ministers will meet in Brussels Sunday to discuss the loans, a French source told AFP, boosting speculation of an announcement before markets open on Monday morning.
  
The loans will be directed in part at Ireland's struggling banks and are intended to try to stop the debt crisis spreading to other eurozone nations.
  
But there is widespread anger in Ireland at the bailout and voters dealt Cowen's Fianna Fail party a humiliating by-election defeat on Friday which cut the FF/Green Party coalition's parliamentary majority to just two.
  
"Why should we pay for the banks? ... The euro is on its way out," said Esther Hoad, 48, a civil servant who drove 180 miles (290 kilometres) on frozen roads to join the Dublin protest.
  
About 700 police officers were deployed in Dublin for the march, which took place amid bitingly cold temperatures, although it was largely peaceful.
  
"We are here to object to the arrogance of the government," Irish Congress of Trade Unions president Jack O'Connor, who is also head of Ireland's biggest union, SIPTU, told the crowd.
  
He added: "They want to sign a blank cheque for generations to come. We're not here to pay for the speculators, but we're here to insist on a fair plan."
  
The march converged on the General Post Office, the scene of Ireland's declaration of independence in 1916, and a highly symbolic site for critics of the bailout who say it is eroding Irish sovereignty.
  
An actress read out the declaration to the crowd Saturday, to huge applause.
  
Cowen has been fighting off calls from opposition lawmakers to quit over his handling of the economy, insisting he must see through the austerity package and the budget to secure the bailout.
  
Media reports suggested Ireland might be charged 6.7 percent interest on the nine-year loans, significantly more than the 5.2 percent rate charged to fellow eurozone country Greece when it was bailed out earlier this year.
  
Michael Noonan, finance spokesman for the Fine Gael main opposition party, said the reports were "very disturbing", adding: "This rate is far too high and is unaffordable on any reasonable projection of growth."
  
Cowen has refused to go to the polls until lawmakers have passed the budget, not likely before January, but opposition parties have said he no longer has a mandate to govern.
  
In Friday's by-election in Donegal, the opposition socialist Sinn Fein party took what was once a stronghold of Cowen's Fianna Fail party.
  
Labour Party leader Eamon Gilmore said the premier's party "has neither the political mandate nor the moral authority to make the crucial decisions the country now faces."
  
The Irish Times said the budget would probably go through given the pressure from the EU and the IMF, but added: "There is a general consensus that Mr Cowen’s days are numbered."

 

Date created : 2010-11-27

  • IRELAND

    Major protests expected against government's austerity plans

    Read more

  • EUROZONE

    Merkel seeks to calm euro breakup fears as markets lose faith

    Read more

  • IRELAND

    Irish austerity plan leaves voters irate and markets cool

    Read more

COMMENT(S)