Tourists turned away from Acropolis as strike continues


Athens – Tourists trying visit the Acropolis, Greece’s premier cultural site, were again turned away on Tuesday as guards continued a week-long strike.

Culture ministry employees launched the strike on February 26, blocking access to the 2,500-year-old site, demanding better working conditions for personnel, of whom nearly 70 per cent are temporary contract workers.

The full affect of the strike had not been felt until Tuesday, as Greece had also been on a three-day public holiday to mark the start of Lent.

The strike has not affected operations at other ancient sites and museums around the country and Acropolis employees will meet later on Tuesday to determine whether or not to continue to their protest.

The Parthenon and other temples atop the Acropolis, a flat-topped hill rising 150 meters above seal level in the heart of Athens, normally attract thousands of visitors a day.

The ancient temple was built between 447 and 432 BC in honour of the goddess of war and wisdom Athena, from whom the Greek capital has taken its name.