Education Minister Criticizes Thessaloniki University Dean for Seeking Police Help to Deal with Drug Trafficking on Campus

Greece’s Education Minister Costas Gavroglou, criticized the unanimous decision of the Dean and the Rector’s Council of Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (AUTH), to seek police assistance in dealing with drug trafficking and drug use on campus, by non-students.

According to Gavroglou, who spoke to Athens-Macedonia News Agency, “the move of the AUTH should concern us for the following reasons: The first one is, to recognize that there is delinquency within the universities. For this reason and for the first time since the return of democracy in Greece, we have set up a committee to deal with delinquency, and to draw up a framework for the operation to stop these things. Since 2011 there has been no legislation on the issue so, the rectors have been able to deal with the problem, which they have somehow let slide. The issue of delinquency cannot be solved by the police alone.”

The education minister defended his position on the university asylum bill he passed, which states that no police force is to be allowed on campuses, unless there is serious danger to human life.

In their own defense, the AUTH authority said that their actions were taken to protect students, and also for the smooth operation of the university. They furthermore replied to the minister’s accusations, stating that they have done nothing to solve the issue of delinquency in universities.

Gavroglou also criticized the AUTH authority for the time they chose to act, meaning the time of his visit to the Thessaloniki International Fair. The university authority replied that the timing had nothing to do with the minister’s visit to the city.