Thousands of protesters gathered in front of the Hellenic Parliament in Athens, Thursday, calling for Greece to stay in the Eurozone as ongoing negotiations between the county and its debtors reached stalemate as the Greek bailout extension deadline looms. Protesters, joined by several conservative politicians from Greece's former government, engulfed Syntagma Square. Participants waved EU flags, some even carrying placards reading "No to Stalinism in Greece". Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras is set to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin tomorrow to discuss a possible alternative to measures being pushed by the institutions known as the Troika (IMF, ECB, EU) dictating Greece's place in the Eurozone. Since Syriza's election, Greek authorities and the institutions have been negotiating for five months to unlock the €7.2 billion ($8bn) of rescue funds it needs to pay the IMF. The bailout extension ends on June 30. If Greece fails to meet the deadline, it faces default and exit from the Eurozone. The quarrel between Greece and its creditors has made the prospect of a deal being struck at Thursday's Eurozone finance ministers' meeting less likely.
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