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article imageTens of thousands protest austerity in Portugal and Spain

By Larry Clifton     Sep 29, 2012 in Politics
Madrid - Saturday, tens of thousands of protesters in Portugal reflected simultaneous protests in Spain where demonstrations turned violent as recently as Tuesday and Wednesday nights.
Swelling crowds of Spaniards and Portuguese protested in the streets of their countries' capitals over painful cuts to pensions, jobs and government services required by international lenders in exchange for bailing out their countries, according to Star News Online.
In Madrid, demonstrators marched on parliament the third time this week raging against tax increases, government spending cuts and high unemployment. Spain’s unemployment was last measured at 25% and rates are high among most of the 17 nations that use the euro currency.
Meanwhile, retired banker Antonio Trinidade of Lisbon complained that budget cuts Portugal had agreed on to access (EURO)78 billion ($101 billion) in bailouts from an association of foreign lenders are the reason the country's economy is the worst he has seen in his lifetime.
Trinidade said his pension was cut and droves of young Portuguese are leaving the country to find work.
"The government and the troika controlling what we do because of the bailout just want to cut more and more and rob from us," Trinidade said, referring to the troika of creditors that include the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund.
"The young don't have any future, and the country is on the edge of an abyss. I'm getting toward the end of my life, but these people in their 20s or 30s don't have jobs, or a future," said Trinidade.
However investors and lender countries, like Germany, say they cannot afford to use their taxpayer’s funds to bailout countries unless they are convinced hundreds of billions in euro can be repaid. Germany stands to lose the majority of money in defaults as the euro zone’s largest economy.
Portugal, Greece and Ireland are already receiving bailouts. Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has attempted to avoid bailouts by instituting tax increases and government cutbacks, however analysts say Spain’s debt crisis is worsening and the country can no longer afford to pay its borrowing costs.
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