On June 19, 2011, Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou proposed a constitutional referendum while delivering remarks to a three-day session of the Hellenic Parliament. The referendum would address issues that aided the onset of the debt crisis in Greece, leading to austerity measures approved by parliament in February 2012. The austerity measures were allowed to go into effect despite warnings from the UN Office of the Commissioner on Human Rights, saying that the measures could result in serious violations of basic human rights.
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