Woman killed in Athens blast identified as mother of two

A woman killed in a gas explosion at a sandwich shop in downtown Athens on Thursday morning has been identified as accountant and mother of two Vassiliki Parastatidou.

Fire investigators say that the explosion on busy Victoria Square was probably caused by welders working in the shop who accidentally cut the gas line.

Parastatidou, who was reported as being in her late-30s or early-40s was working in a basement office at the time of the explosion, which is where firefighters later discovered her body.

The company that owns the Everest fast-food chain, Everfood SA, issued a statement expressing its “undivided support” for her family and adding that it is cooperating with authorities investigating the cause of the explosion.

Five other people who were in the shop were also slightly injured in the blast, which occurred shortly before 9.30 a.m. and forced the closure of the nearby electric railway (ISAP) station, as well as a section of Patission Street.