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Greece rushes to pass bailout laws amid protests

Reuters – 45 minutes ago

  • Fitch downgrades on bond swap scheme
  • New demonstrations planned against cuts
  • Lawmakers to debate launching debt swap

ATHENS, Feb 22 (Reuters) – The Greek parliament, barricaded from protests by workers and pensioners angry over austerity, scrambled on Wednesday to pass laws needed to secure payment of a second international bailout for the debt-laden country.

Credit ratings agency Fitch downgraded Greece further ahead of a planned bond swap under which it will enforce sharp losses on private creditors as part of the bailout programme.