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European social explosion looms, European Parliament president says

Public sector employees hold a demonstration to protest against the Spanish government

Public sector employees hold a demonstration to protest against the Spanish government’s austerity measures in Madrid on July 17, 2012.
Sat Jul 21, 2012 9:51PM GMT
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The European Parliament has warned that the economic crisis in Spain could lead to a “social explosion” in Europe as the wave of anti-austerity demonstrations sweeping across the continent shows no sign of subsiding.

“The demonstrations in Spain show that a social explosion is looming because of the high unemployment rate among young people in Europe,” European Parliament President Martin Schulz told the German daily Bild in an interview published on Saturday, AFP reported.

Schulz called for rapid implementation of “new European programs to finally create more jobs for this generation.”

However, despite all the gloomy talk about southern Europe, he expressed hope that Spain would survive the crisis, thanks to its “solid industrial base” and “well-organized public administration.”

Over the past few months, Spaniards have staged numerous demonstrations to vent their frustration over the government’s economic policies and tough austerity measures adopted to reduce a serious budget deficit.

On Friday, the Spanish government said that the country’s economic problems will persist until 2013 and predicted that the unemployment rate will climb as high as 24.6 percent this year.

Spain is facing panic on the markets and unprecedented social discontent, and even the eurozone’s approval of a massive bank bailout, which could reach 100 billion euros ($120 billion), did not calm the markets.

MRS/HGL

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