Police respond to allegations of excessive force during Sunday rally

Police respond to allegations of excessive force during Sunday rally

The Greek Police (ELAS) has responded to allegations of excessive force used against protesters during Sunday’s rally in Athens against the country’s name deal with the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM).

In a statement, ELAS said police measures were aimed at ensuring public safety during the demonstration as well as safeguarding public buildings against intrusion and vandalism.

ELAS, which also released an aerial video of the clashes, said authorities had received information that groups of protesters would attempt to storm Parliament. It said maps had been circulated among protesters with detailed directions as to how to access the parliament building.

Authorities said 28 police officers were injured during clashes with protesters outside Parliament.

Demonstrators threw rocks, flares, firebombs, paint and other objects at riot police who responded with repeated volleys of tear gas. Some protesters jumped over a fence and attempted to scale the steps, but officers chased them back down.

A fresh rally against the Prespes deal has been called for Thursday.

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