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Portugal police protest over pared pay

Published on 06/03/2014

Thousands of police protested in Lisbon late Thursday over pay cuts imposed by the government as part of an austerity drive to roll back public debt.

“Since January they’ve taken 200 euros ($280) from my monthly pay. And I’m not even counting the pay-cuts over the past three years,” said one officer from the centre of the country, Antonio Ferreira.

Police unions called the demonstration after several rounds of talks with the interior minister proved unsuccessful.

In a protest last November, around 10,000 officers rallied in front of Portugal’s parliament. Some had forced their way past barriers and colleagues guarding the building to briefly occupy the legislature’s steps.

That disturbance cost the country’s national police chief his post.

Portugal is tightening its budget belt severely to comply with the terms of an international bailout.