10 Apr '11, 1am

EU finance ministers defend austerity

GODOLLO (Hungary) - EUROPEAN finance ministers defended the painful austerity measures being imposed in the region as necessary to defeat a crippling debt crisis. But tens of thousands of people protested nearby to condemn what they called unfair and risky sacrifices imposed on workers instead of the bankers who caused the problems. About 50,000 people took part in the peaceful demonstration in Budapest on Saturday, which was called by many European unions about 30km from where the EU ministers met. Many of the protesters complained about what they called unfair restrictions on their salaries and pensions. In Godollo, the town where the ministers met, Spanish Finance Minister Elena Salgado said budget cuts 'are necessary because we need to grow and grow better and reduce our deficit to be able to continue paying for the state of well-being.' In recent months, Spain's Socia...

Full article: http://www.straitstimes.com/BreakingNews/Money/Story/STIS...

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