Risk of border blockade as protesting Greek farmers gather on road to Bulgarian checkpoint
The situation at the Greek-Bulgarian border was being eyed with concern on January 26 as Greek farmers protesting against tax reforms in their country gathered dozens of agricultural vehicles in the northern city of Serres, reportedly ready to try to block the Promachonas checkpoint at the Bulgarian frontier.
There were agricultural vehicles on both sides of the road to the northern Greek city of Thessaloniki, reports from the scene on Thursday said.
The large number of tractors on the Serres – Thessaloniki road caused traffic obstructions on January 25. Greek police stepped in to divert car traffic as the road was blocked for an hour.
The police presence in the region of Serres had been stepped up, reports on January 26 said.
Bulgarian goods lorry transport firms have threatened a counter-blockade of the Greek border, blocking Greek produce, if the Greek farmers shut down the border checkpoints as they did in February 2016.
Greek farmers opposed to tax and social insurance contributions reforms planned to block the Nikaia junction on the country’s main north-south motorway on January 26.
They earlier had planned a blockade of the Greek-Bulgarian border checkpoints starting from January 23, but this was called off because of severe winter weather conditions and a lack of consensus among farmers about proceeding with a blockade.