Greek government in emergency meeting as transport strikers defy court, crippling capital

Greece's conservative prime minister is holding an emergency meeting to decide how to get striking public transport employees back to work.

Strikers protesting pay cuts refused to return to work Thursday, leaving Athens' subway system closed for an eighth day, despite a court decision declaring their protest illegal.

The confrontation is a challenge to the government's latest round of austerity measures, needed for continued bailout payments but which have also deepened hardship as the country enters a sixth year of recession.

The government has not ruled out forcing the strikers back to work, using special powers normally reserved for wartime or national emergencies.