CULTURE

The November 17 trial continues with a week of bitter testimony

Alongside the war that is turning out to be neither as «unavoidable» nor as «brief» as the hawks believed – not only those in Washington but also in Europe, where the species appears to be widespread – is the trial of the November 17 terrorist suspects in a courtroom in Korydallos Prison. Those who are guilty of the murders, robberies and injuries committed in the name of November 17 in its 27 years of action must be brought to justice. «The people demand justice. Put them there where they put my (husband),» said the widow of prosecutor Constantine Androulidakis, who died after a month in a coma after being shot by November 17 in 1989. «My husband knew that he was on a hit list,» said Eleni Athanassiadi, who, along with her daughter Alexandra, is a civil plaintiff in the murder of Alexandros Athanassiadis-Bodosakis, nephew and heir of Prodromos Bodosakis, a big businessman in Asia Minor and the founder of the Bodosakis Foundation, which still awards prizes to Greeks abroad for their work in science. «He was a person who was useful to society. He was young, just 58, in excellent health, yet they shot five bullets into him. No one should have to experience what we did,» said his daughter Alexandra. «Justice: The guilty should be punished,» said her mother. «A Greek resistance hero who had links with British fellow-fighters had warned him three weeks before his death that his life was in danger. I don’t remember the person’s name,» she added. Yesterday, it was the turn of Panayiotis Tarasouleas, deputy Supreme Court prosecutor, to give testimony. Tall and upright, despite serious injuries to his legs that still plague him 14 years later, he stood in court for an hour and pointed to defendant Savvas Xeros as the man who shot him. His description of the «attempted murder» was as follows: He had gone out with his wife Elpida to visit a friend who was celebrating his name day on January 18, 1989. On Antheon Street, in Halandri, near the bus stop, he was shot three times in the legs as he was putting a box of sweets into the trunk of his car. «I fell to the ground and turned around and saw him standing a short distance away, his pistol trained on me. I thought he was going to finish me off. ‘Why did you do it?’ I asked him. He looked at me in some confusion. It was dark. He was young, very young. He turned and left, and another man who was watching, went after him. I thought he wanted to kill me, that he had orders to empty the barrel, but he didn’t. I think it was because I asked him why. That was what saved me.» On Thursday, it was the turn of witnesses to the murder of US naval attache William Nordeen on June 28, 1988. The victim was driving down Diliyianni Street in Kefalari when, at the corner of Gounari Street, a booby-trapped parked car blew up next him. The victim was thrown, along with the remains of his car, into the garden of an abandoned villa, his head half-severed, his bag containing documents untouched. The witnesses identified defendant Christodoulos Xeros as the person riding pillion on the getaway motorbike. In the Androulidakis murder, defendant Constantinos Telios, who has confessed his part in the crime, said that he had been there «with [co-defendants Vassilis] Tzortzatos and [Dimitris] Koufodinas.» A businessman, a prosecutor, a deputy prosecutor on the Supreme Court, and an American naval attache were the targets and the opportunity for November 17 to claim responsibility by means of proclamations that required a «second reading» to be comprehensible, as Tarasouleas said. Yesterday, following a request by presiding judge Michalis Margaritis, Athens Mayor Dora Bakoyianni arrived in court, accompanyied by her children Alexia and Costas, a student at Harvard, to hear evidence regarding the murder of their father Pavlos Bakoyiannis, the parliamentary deputy and journalist. They are likely to make statements on Monday.