Protesting Greek farmers debate next moves after government offers some concessions

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ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis offered some concessions Tuesday to farming unionists who are threatening to block roads around the country amid protests over high production costs.

But it was unclear whether the representatives of farming associations who met with Mitsotakis in Athens were appeased by the concessions, which included some tax rebates. They said decisions would be taken following regional meetings of protesting farmers from later Tuesday.

Rizos Maroudas, a unionist present at the meeting, indicated he would advocate a tough stance.

“Not all our demands have been met,” he told journalists after the talks. “We believe that our (protests) must continue.”

Farmers in several parts of the country have been staging brief, largely symbolic roadblocks, mostly avoiding key highways, for days, and have threatened to ramp up the campaign.

The unrest follows farmers' protests in several European Union countries over inflation, foreign competition and the costs of combating climate change.

Greece's center-right government has said it will try to reduce production costs and expedite compensation payments and tax relief for farmers hit by deadly floods last year.

Mitsotakis on Tuesday promised farmers reduced energy bills and some tax rebates, but warned that budgetary constraints left little room for major increases in spending.