The streets of Athens were set afire ahead of a key vote by the Greek parliament Thursday to okay a new bailout program.

Europe moved to re-open funding to Greece's stricken economy after the agreement.But anti-austerity protests left the country further scarred -- and the vote, further politically fractured.

Protesters threw dozens of molotov cocktails at cops Wednesday night before the vote.Police responded with tear gas, sending hundreds of people fleeing in central Syntagma Square.

Thousands of people have flooded the streets of Athens and other Greek cities in more peaceful marches, complaining Europe is turning the screws too tight with the bailout package, which will force reforms on the country.


The European Union finance ministers on Thursday also okayed $7.6 billion in bridging loans to keep Greece afloat, allowing it to clear its arrears with the International Monetary Fund.

The loans will be finalized on Friday provided Germany's parliament approves a Berlin government request to open talks on a three-year bailout program - Greece's third in the past five years - worth up to 86 billion euros.

The twin lifelines were a reward for Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras after he won the backing of parliament in the early hours of Thursday for the tough reform measures demanded by creditors led by Germany.

Greek banks are set to reopen Monday.

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