The president dissolved parliament and called new elections for March 7, whereupon the country’s largest trade union umbrella group announced it would greet the new government with a nationwide strike March 31. Such strikes are common occurrences in Greece, but they can wreak havoc with transportation and other key public services.

The U.S. Consulate General in Thessaloniki was closed until further notice Feb. 13 because of an undisclosed telephone threat. Several arson attacks have occurred in Thessaloniki since June, and two occurred the day the consulate closed.