ATHENS, Aug. 5 (Xinhua) -- Greek journalists and technicians in print and electronic media across Greece walked off the job on Tuesday amidst a 24-hour strike called by their trade unions in protest of a draft bill on mergers in the sector.
The news blackout started as the parliament debated the bill which sets the conditions for the mergers of publishing companies and lifts previous restrictions on mass dismissals of employees.
With the backing of the conservative ruling party and the co-ruling socialists the bill passed amidst criticism by unions and opposition parties that it opens the way for the concentration of media in the hands of few media moguls.
Opponents of the law argue that it leads to further layoffs in a sector which has already been hit hard by the four-year economic crisis in the country and in addition that the quality of the news content may be severely affected.
Proponents of the new law respond that on the contrary it helps several publishing firms to keep afloat by uniting forces and subsequently supports employment in the sector.