Greek opposition slams gov’t over spike in violence


A few hours after self-styled anarchists claimed responsibility for a weekend firebomb attack against a riot police unit in northern Greece, the conservative opposition accused the left-led government for failing to curb an upsurge of violence and lawlessness in the country.

In a statement Wednesday, New Democracy attacked the government for “downplaying – or, worse even, fomenting – the activity of [anarchist] groups in universities and all sorts of no-go areas.”

The party of Kyriakos Mitsotakis said leftist Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras was personally responsible for the situation.

Earlier Wednesday, an anti-establishment group claimed responsibility for Saturday’s firebomb attack in Thessaloniki against a riot unit van guarding the Turkish Consulate which put the lives of some 20 officers at risk.

A statement posted on an anarchist website, singed simply as “insurgents,” said that “we choose to stare the real enemy in the eye, to stare its armed guards in the eye and burn them.”

“Cops are a first obstacle, they are the armed guard of the establishment. And they are not indestructible,” the statement said.

“They are a target because of the role they have chosen to undertake in public life. They are protectors of the state and of the masters; they are always prepared to suppress every effort for rebellion or revolution.”

On Tuesday officers holding banners protested against what they called “murderous attacks” against their colleagues and accused the state of “indifference.”

They said that since 2010, riot police units guarding the Turkish Consulate in Thessaloniki have been attacked at least 17 times without anyone ever getting arrested.

The head of the local union of police officers, Theodoros Tsairidis, said that riot police units have become targets.