NEWS

Police station, minister come under attack

Three people were being treated in an Athens hospital on Sunday for burns suffered during an arson attack on Saturday at a police station in the central Athens neighborhood of Exarchia.

A 47-year-old man, a 55-year-old woman and a 48-year-old foreign national who were passing by at the time of the afternoon raid were hurt.

The 47-year-old was still in intensive care yesterday after a firebomb hit the motorcycle he was riding, causing the fuel tank to explode.

Witnesses said a group of about 30 assailants threw Molotov cocktails at the police station before running off. No policemen were injured. ?This proves that some people are trying to ensure blood is shed as they want to cause social turmoil,? said Citizens? Protection Minister Christos Papoutsis. No group had claimed the attack by Sunday night.

The firebombing came a few days after a 30-year-old demonstrator suffered serious head injuries during an anti-austerity rally after allegedly being beaten by police. Papoutsis condemned the incident and was openly critical of the police.

His comments, however, were criticized over the weekend by police unionists, New Democracy and Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS). ND public order spokesman Thanassis Nakos said Papoutsis?s comments encouraged ?extremists? to target the police.