Shots fired at police in Exarchia came from same gun used in embassy attack

Shots fired at police in Exarchia came from same gun used in embassy attack

A group calling itself Organization for Revolutionary Self-Defense appears to be behind an armed attack on Monday night against riot police in the Athens neighborhood of Exarchia.

Ballistics tests on three assault rifle shell casings retrieved from the scene where a gunman fired at two police officers, say they match those found after similar attacks in January this year and April 2014 at the same location, outside the offices of the PASOK party. They also match the casings found after the Mexican Embassy in central Athens was shot at in the summer of 2016.

Revolutionary Self-Defense had claimed responsibility for the attack on the Mexican Embassy, but also that on PASOK’s offices in 2014. The urban guerrilla group has also said it was responsible for hand grenade attack on the French Embassy in November 2016 in which a guard was injured.

There were no injuries reported in Monday evening’s assault, as the two officers spotted their assailant when he was approaching and managed to dodge the bullets that were fired from a distance of 30-40 meters.

The shooter made off on a motorcycle being driven by an accomplice.

The attack is being treated as an attempt against the police.

“The officers were the target, not PASOK’s offices. The shots were fired at head height,” the vice president of the Union of Athens Police Employees, Dimosthenis Pakos, told Kathimerini.

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