General strike against austerity measures shuts down services across Greece

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Public and many private services have shut down across Greece as unions hold a 24-hour general strike to protest further austerity cuts in the recession-plagued country.

Wednesday's strike disrupted public transport, halted ferry and train services, shut down state-run schools and left state hospitals and the ambulance service functioning with emergency staff.

Dozens of flights were canceled or rescheduled as air traffic controllers were to walk off the job for three hours from noon in support of the labor action.

The strike comes during tough negotiations between the government and debt inspectors from the International Monetary Fund, European Central Bank and European Commission, known collectively as the troika, over what measures are needed to plug a budget gap next year.