Seamen ended on Monday a week-long anti-austerity strike which stranded ferries and passengers at ports, hitting the key tourism sector and disrupting food and fuel supplies to islands.
Greece’s Socialist government is defying labour union action and implementing further belt-tightening measures prescribed by the European Union and the International Monetary Fund in exchange for more bailout funds to avoid bankruptcy.
“The strike is over. It lasted eight days and our demands were not satisfied. We must now re-evaluate our strengths and reorganise,” said Yannis Halas, general secretary of the Panhellenic Seamen’s Federation PNO.L.
At the weekend, seamen in Crete bowed to pressure from angry farmers fearing 600 tonnes of vegetables and fruit would rot on trucks at the island’s harbours, and allowed three ships to sail to Piraeus, the port for the capital Athens.
PNO wants wage rises, a halt to layoffs and more jobs, among other demands.