Petros Giannakouris/AP A firefighter holds a flare as otherschant slogans outside the Greek parliament during a protest in central Athens last month. About 2,000 firefighters demonstrated against planned spending cuts by the center-left government, which isstruggling to reform Greece's debt-ridden economy and plug a vast budget deficit. Prime Minister George Papandreou has ruled out pay increases for most civil servants this year, citing the state of thepublic finances, and says public sector hirings will be limited.
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Greece is experiencing a budget crisis so severe that the country may lose its footing in theEuropean Union. Athens is reporting a deficit that is four times the EU limit, which means that Greece could be in danger of losing the euro as its national currency.
The government has promised toughausterity measures, but many Greeks say they are in no mood for sacrifice.
Farmers are blocking border crossings, highways and major ports to demonstrate their frustration. They say they're desperate.Cheap imports and middlemen's charges are apparently pushing Greek produce out of major markets.
Pavlos Issaris grows potatoes, wheat and corn. He says the cost of doing business is putting him outof business. He and other farmers want the government to provide subsidies to reduce the price of diesel and other necessities. And Issaris says he also wants the government to more aggressively...