NEWS

ELA witness identifies 2 suspects

The top prosecution witness in the Revolutionary Popular Struggle (ELA) terrorism trial opened her testimony yesterday by identifying as group members two of the defendants – including her estranged former husband. Sophia Kyriakidou, whose pre-trial testimony led authorities to the arrest of five suspected extreme left-wing ELA terrorists, told the court sitting in the Athens Korydallos Prison that Angeletos Kanas used to send her to a shop off Omonia Square to buy clocks for use in his bombs. Kyriakidou said Kanas – who had been elected mayor of Kimolos island, in the Cyclades, shortly before his arrest in early 2003 – assembled and placed ELA’s bombs, and had had kept bomb-making manuals in their flat. But she said Kanas was probably not involved in writing ELA’s pamphlets, being but poorly educated. Kanas, she said, recruited her into the group which he later identified as ELA, and got her to rent a safe house with a forged identity card. Kyriakidou has not been indicted for ELA membership, as judges accepted that she left the group in 1990, thus falling outside the statute of limitation. The witness also named defendant Irini Athanassaki as one of the ELA members – code-named Myrto – she saw in the safe house, but said she was unsure whether Costas Agapiou was the terrorist she met as «Yiannis.» Kyriakidou also told the court that she and Kanas had visited a flat in Exarchia, central Athens, used by another terrorist group, where she saw «somebody whom I often see on television, but whose name I cannot remember.» She will continue her testimony when the trial resumes after the Easter holiday. The trial opened on February 9. The suspects are charged with involvement in two assassinations and dozens of bomb attacks.