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Protesters Clash With Police in Thessaloniki as Greek PM Visits Int'l Fair

© Sputnik / Vladimir Fedorenko / Go to the photo bankA view of the city of Thessaloniki in Greece
A view of the city of Thessaloniki in Greece - Sputnik International
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Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras is set to give an official speech at the Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF) at 18:00 local time (15:00 GMT), announcing his government's economic policy for the next year.

State TV has shown images of police chasing protesters near barriers in Thessaloniki.

During the Greek prime minister's visit to the TIF, several rallies are being held in Thessaloniki: trade unions, groups of farmers and pensioners are set to organize protests against the government's economic policy, while later in the day a demonstration against the agreement between Athens and Skopje on the new name for Macedonia is also set to take place.

In June, Greece and Macedonia signed an agreement ending a decades-long dispute over the use of "Macedonia," which is also the name of a region in Greece, and concluding that the "Republic of Northern Macedonia" would be an appropriate name. On July 30, the Macedonian parliament approved, by a slim majority, the decision to hold a referendum on the country's new constitutional name – the Republic of Northern Macedonia – on September 30.

The agreement also cleared the way for Macedonia to seek NATO and European Union membership, something that was previously impossible because of Athens' objections. However, many political forces in both countries are opposing the deal.

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