Anti-junta uprising anniversary to be marked amid tight security

A massive security operation is being mounted in central Athens for the 41st anniversary of the 1973 bloody student uprising against the military dictatorship.

Some 7,000 police officers will be on duty in the Greek capital. Athens University’s Law School and the Athens University of Economics and Business have been ringfenced by police and there will also be police cordons at Parliament, the Finance Ministry and the US Embassy.

The gates of the National Technical University (ex-polytechnic) are due to close at 1 p.m. and the traditional march to the US Embassy is expected to begin at 3 p.m.

There will be traffic restrictions in downtown Athens and authorities have advised drivers to avoid the center. There will also be changes to public transport, with some metro stations likely to close for several hours.

Police chiefs have ordered officers to be on the lookout for attacks on government buildings and police precincts, as well as attempts to take over universities.

Tension was ratcheted up last week when some universities closed their doors to students to prevent sit-ins. The police were called in to guard the institutions and two students were injured in the process.

Also, police used tear gas and stun grenades to prevent dozens of students entering the grounds of the former polytechnic at the end of a peaceful protest.

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