A group of anarchists coming out of the Athens University of Economics and Business (ASOEE) has been filmed smashing shop windows and a post office in the Greek capital.
Police believe the masked assailants are anarchists who, for a fourth consecutive day, went on the rampage in a show of support of jailed colleague Constantinos Giagtzoglou.
About 10 men wearing hoods carrying sledgehammers and crowbars came out of ASOEE a little after 10 a.m. local time (0800GMT) and smashed the windows of 10 stores and a post office. The perpetrators hid again in the ASOEE building when a strong police force arrived at the scene.
Shopkeepers complained to the police about the damages to their stores, including a large electronics store and coffee shops across ASOEE.
A series of attacks by anarchist groups in Athens, Thessaloniki and Patras has taken place in the past four days, after Giagtzoglou went on hunger and thirst strike demanding to be transferred from Larissa Prison to Korydallos Prison in Athens.
The 29-year-old self-declared anarchist is charged with sending a parcel bomb that seriously injured former Prime Minister Lucas Papademos in May 2017.
Citizen protection minister: Police are not doing their job as instructed
Deputy Citizen Protection Minister Nikos Toskas has criticized police for not doing their job in curbing attacks and vandalism by anarchist groups as he has instructed.
Toskas spoke on Ant1 television on Friday morning saying that the “Hellenic Police did not do their job properly” in stopping the anarchist groups causing havoc in central Athens for four consecutive days.
The minister said he is “angry and enraged” because he had given police a detailed operation plan that was not followed. At the same time he said that 200 extra police officers will be patrolling central Athens “as of today” (Friday).
Toskas also criticized Athens Mayor Giorgos Kaminis and New Democracy president Kyriakos Mitsotakis for accusing him of showing tolerance to anarchist groups. The deputy minister said that the Athens mayor is not up to the job and the main opposition chief is a hypocrite for complaining about violence in Athens.
Police union claims minister tolerant of anarchist acts
General secretary of the Special Guards of the Hellenic Police Stratos Mavroeidakos said: “The only thing that is certain is that the policeman will pay in the end,” adding that the state does not recognize the work of the police.
Mavroeidakos spoke on SKAI television in reply to the statements made by the deputy minister for citizen protection. “It is a pity because the minister is losing his temper,” he said. “Soon it will be news that there was no assault against a police squad,” he said ironically, adding that: “We sound a warning bell so that there won’t be a dead colleague or citizen at some point.”
Mavroeidakos spoke of “political tolerance for the troublemakers” and reiterated: “It was wrong to remove the Delta Team and immobilize the DIAS Team,” referring to special police units that have been effective in the past.
“What do you do when Rubicon members are brought in and then set free with no charges filed against them, while at the same time colleagues are chastised for arresting them?” the police union boss said.