Mon, Dec 22, 2008 - Page 6 News List

Greek protesters hurl firebombs at police in Athens

AFP , ATHENS

Clashes between youths and police continued early yesterday morning around Athens Polytechnic in the district where a teenager was killed by a policeman two weeks ago, sparking nationwide unrest.

Hundreds of people gathered late on Saturday in the Exarchia district at the site of the Dec. 6 shooting of 15-year-old Alexis Grigoropoulos for a protest organized by youths occupying Athens Polytechnic.

Protesters hurled firebombs at police who responded with tear gas. A group threw stones and Molotov cocktails and set fire to garbage bins, acts often seen in Exarchia since the boy’s killing.

Police also clashed with protesters after a separate demonstration against racism that was attended by around 200 people in Syntagma Square.

“Migrants are killed, schoolchildren are killed,” said banners carried by the protesters, who marched to the Greek parliament.

NEW TREE

Protesters threw garbage at police who ringed a Christmas tree on the main square. The tree was brought in last week after the original was torched at the height of unrest.

Later, a group threw a petrol bomb at a building housing a banking services company, although there was only minor damage and the fire was quickly brought under control.

In Nea Philadelfia, a western suburb of Athens, demonstrators threw Molotov cocktails at the police academy and torched six police vehicles without causing any casualties, police said.

Athens and other Greek cities have seen daily protests over Grigoropoulos’ death that have often become violent.

RALLY IN GERMANY

Meanwhile, German police on Saturday arrested 10 people and suffered four injuries in fighting with demonstrators staging a rally in Hamburg in support of the Greek protests, officials said.

About 1,300 police were mobilized to monitor the approximately 1,000 demonstrators who marched to the Greek consulate in the northern port city.

Greek Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis has shrugged off calls to resign. Last week he announced financial measures to support the business and tourism sectors, hardest-hit by the unrest.

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