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Protests against the centre-right coalition government’s policies are being planned around the country for Thursday, the day of the fourth general strike since the government took office. Public transport is expected to be among the worst affected sectors.

Depositphotos_11288355_xs ProtestStreet protests against the current right-of-centre government’s policies are being planned around the country for Thursday, the day of the fourth general strike called by Portugal’s two trade union confederation since the administration took office two years ago.

This is the first general strike called by the CGTP and UGT confederations since November 2011, and only the third joint general strike since democracy was instituted in Portugal in the 1970s. Still, the leaders of the two organisations are not expected to appear together at any of the day’s events.

The sharpening of austerity – with billions of euros in further spending cuts planned to meet the targets set by Portugal’s eurozone bailout – is among reasons cited by unions for staging the strike, which has been called by both the country’s largest confederations. They are also angry at labour reforms that they say represent an attack on workers’ rights.

As well as picketing at workplaces in district capitals, there are to be protests outside the Ministry of Finance and marches from downtown Lisbon to parliament. Not only trade unions but independent groups campaigning against austerity are staging events calling for the government to resign.

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