(AP) - NATIONWIDE HALT: Services across Greece shut down Wednesday as unions staged a 24-hour general strike and held peaceful demonstrations to protest further austerity cuts in the cash-strapped country.
THE EFFECTS: The strike disrupted public transport, halted ferry and train services, shut down courts and state-run schools, and left state hospitals and the ambulance service functioning with emergency staff.
THE BACKGROUND: Greece has been surviving on international rescue loans from the International Monetary Fund and other European countries that use the euro since 2010, after a combination of dismal financial stewardship, loss of investor confidence and the global recession brought it to the brink of bankruptcy.
(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)