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Assailants target bank and government vehicles

Latest update : 2008-12-27

Assailants firebombed a government official's car on Friday and attacked a police vehicle while elsewhere a Molotov cocktail was launched at a bank in continuing protests across the country sparked by the Dec. 6 police killing of a teenage boy.

AFP- A Greek government official's car was firebombed in front of his house on Friday while assailants threw a Molotov cocktail at a bank and another group attacked a police car, authorities said.
Attacks on government and banking facilities are frequent in Greece, but they have been widespread since a 15-year-old boy was killed by police earlier this month, triggering a wave of violent youth protests against authorities.
The government car used by a junior environment minister, Stavros Kaloyannis, was hit by a petrol bomb early Friday while it was parked in front of his house in the northwestern city of Ioannina.
Assailants also threw a molotov cocktail at a branch of the Greek Farm Bank in Psychiko, a suburb of Athens, causing minor damage.
In the evening, a group of youths banged up a police car that was passing in front of an Athens hospital, where they had gathered in support of a union member who was hospitalised there after being attacked by unknown assailants.
The police officers fled and no one was injured.
Late Thursday, a commuter train was hit by bullets in the Athens suburb of Tavros. Police opened an investigation into the attack, in which no one was hit.
Earlier that day, seven cars were damaged in arson attacks on three dealerships in Athens while an agriculture ministry building and a bank were also targetted.
The attacks come after three weeks of daily protests over the fatal shooting of 15-year-old Alexis Grigoropoulos by a police officer on December 6.
The teenager's death sparked youth protests which degenerated into the worst rampage Greece has seen in decades with hundreds of shops smashed or looted in Athens and other cities.
The shopowners' union in Athens announced that it would exceptionally open stores in the capital on Sunday to encourage consumer spending in the wake of the damage caused by the protests.
The workers' union opposed the move, however, saying the government was trying to eliminate Sunday as a day off.
The Athens Chamber of Commerce said the protests caused 50 million euros (70 million dollars) in damages.


Date created : 2008-12-26