A few dozen members of a crowd gathered outside the historic Athens Polytechnic building to mark the November 17 anniversary of a 1973 student uprising against Greece's military dictatorship lashed out a group of leftist government officials who came to pay their respects at a memorial to the movement's victims on Friday morning.
Interior Minister Panos Skourletis, Education Minister Costas Gavroglou, Defense Alternate Panagiotis Rigas, Citizens' Protection Alternate Nikos Toskas, and MPs Nikos Filis, Giorgos Dritsas and Yiannis Manios were pushed back and insulted by several members of a large crowd gathered in front of the building's entrance on downtown Patission Street.
“The events that unfolded here today are a dishonor to the struggles of that generation,” Rigas said after the incident.
“These are actions by individuals who are trying to prevent the democratic expression of people who want to honor the struggles of that time,” Toskas added.
Manios dismissed his attackers as “budding future fascists.”
In a related development, meanwhile, the committee that is responsible for organizing the annual commemorations issued a plea on Friday to a group of self-styled anarchists who have taken over one of the buildings on the historic university's campus, hanging anti-establishment banners.
The committee condemned the building's occupation, calling for the public to be given “free and unimpeded access” to the campus.