Three women sentenced for Skouries clash

Three women from Halkidiki, northern Greece, were given suspended jail terms of between six and seven months on Tuesday after being found guilty of trying to obstruct a mining vehicle from approaching a gold mining site located in the area of Skouries.

The lawyers representing the women, aged 25, 39 and 40, said on Tuesday that they would appeal the verdicts.

Meanwhile, two men charged in connection with an arson attack in February on the premises of Hellas Gold, a company which is 95-percent owned by Vancouver-based Eldorado Gold, were given conditional release after testifying before an investigating magistrate. They were banned from leaving the country while one of the two was obliged to post 8,000 euros in bail.

There has been mounting tension in the area over the Hellas Gold project which many locals object to. Although Hellas Gold claims that the mine could directly and indirectly create about 5,000 jobs, residents argue that the work site would destroy Skouries forest and put at risk their economic prospects by damaging the area’s potential to attract visitors.