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Molotov bombs against Turkey’s consulate in Thessaloniki

18 December 2015 / 13:12:00  GRReporter
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Unknown persons attacked the Turkey’s consulate in Thessaloniki early this morning. According to initial information on the case, the attackers wore hoods and threw petrol Molotov bombs against the building, which is located on the main street Agiou Dimitriou.

In particular, at around 3:20 am the attackers had appeared in front of the diplomatic mission and had thrown about 15 Molotov cocktails against the police guards outside the building.

Immediately afterwards, they fled in the surrounding streets. There were no injuries or damage to the consulate building during the attack. The case is under investigation.

At the same time, the police authorities are seriously concerned over the frequent attacks in the Athens neighbourhood of Exarcheia. The most serious of them, the beating that anarchists inflicted on New Democracy MP Vassilis Oikonomou was preceded by attacks on the headquarters of the socialist PASOK party and other targets.

The residents of the embattled neighbourhood are shocked mainly by the fact that it was another attack in succession that followed the lighter and only verbal attacks against former Minister of Finance Yanis Varoufakis and Minister of Energy Panos Skourletis. Moreover, the beating inflicted on Vassilis Oikonomou turned time back to December 2010 when "discontented citizens" of different "political spaces" beat New Democracy MP Kostis Hatzidakis. Other "angry young men" have recently attacked his colleague George Koumoutsakos during a rally of Pontic Greeks on Syntagma Square.

However, Exarcheia undoubtedly is where most attacks are happening and people are seriously worried that their neighbourhood is turning into a ghetto. The problem affects not only the owners of shops, restaurants and other establishments. Regardless of how hard the people who are living or working in the otherwise historic district in the centre of the Greek capital are denying it, it is gradually turning into a kind of ghetto, "as the feeling of basic fear is making all of us, residents and visitors, freeze." A restaurant owner in Exarcheia made the statement before the newspaper Kathimerini, wondering whether the authorities really want to impose police controls in Exarcheia.

According to the association of special forces officers of the Greek police, "the parastatal formations in Exarcheia are becoming bolder due to the lack of police presence in the neighbourhood."

Commentators ask who "determines" what people are allowed to move in the streets of the neighbourhood and if there is actually a kind of "toll office" where visitors must present a certificate of their political views or professional employment.

Kathimerini comments that with the upsurge in terrorist attacks and violence in Greece, this problem will become more acute. The multi-layered crisis in Greece appears to have dulled the reflexes and the protection of society against violence. At the same time, it has even made the state increasingly impotent against the attacks that are directed at the most precious human benefits and democratic conquests, such as security and freedom of expression.

"The attacks show the deep decay of our TV democracy, while governments are presenting themselves as (selectively?) unwilling to deal with escalating violence," reads Kathimerini.

Tags: Crime newsAttack on Turkey's consulate in ThessalonikiMolotov cocktailsEscalation of violenceExarcheia neighbourhood
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