NEWS

Education Ministry condemns EPAL violence, calls for probe

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The Education Ministry has condemned recent violence at a vocational high school (EPAL) in Thessaloniki’s western suburb of Stavroupoli and called for a probe into the incidents.

In a statement Wednesday, the ministry criticized the actions of “isolated groups that tarnish the image of our schools [which are] areas of knowledge, creativity and free thinking.”

“Violent behavior… will not be tolerated,” the statement said, adding that Education Minister Niki Kerameus has called for a prosecutor to intervene over the incidents.

Members of the police’s riot division on Wednesday fired teargas to disperse a group of alleged far-right supporters after they attacked a protest rally held outside the school.

The intervention came after dozens of teenagers – most of whom had their features hidden by masks, hoods and crash helmets – threw glass bottles, firebombs and rocks from inside the school against the demonstrators. 

Video footage showed some of the teenagers giving Nazi salutes. 

It was not clear if the attackers were also pupils at the EPAL.

Police made three arrests. Two pupils were hospitalized with injuries.

The demonstrators were protesting against a violent attack by far-right activists during a rally staged in the same area the previous day. Tuesday’s rally was held in solidarity with students who were assaulted last week while passing out flyers with anti-fascist content.

Golden Dawn’s Youth Front on Tuesday issued a statement congratulating the perpetrators of the attack.