"Our lives do not belong to the creditors!" read banners held aloft by demonstrators, many of whom support Prime Minister Alexis Tspiras and said they would heed his call to vote against the latest deal in a referendum yesterday – despite the risks the country might then go crashing out of the eurozone.


"The people of Greece have made many sacrifices. What interests me is not the euro but guaranteeing a dignified way of life for the next generations," 50-year-old Vanguelis Tseres, who has been unemployed since the start of the debt crisis in 2010, told in Syntagma square in the capital.

European leaders had earlier Monday pleaded with Greek voters to back the hotly disputed bailout proposals or face leaving the euro. EU chief Jean-Claude Juncker warned Greeks they "shouldn't choose suicide just because you are afraid of death," urging them to vote 'Yes' as a 'No' vote would be a no to Europe.

But Loula Bakrina, a petite blonde, said, “I will say no because I want my children to be free." A demonstration in favour of the bailout deal was due to be held on Tuesday.

"Today, those who stand tall are here. Tomorrow it will be those on all fours," demonstrator Trintafilos said, mocking people expected to gather in Syntagma square in a rally against the government's handling of the crisis.



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