Athens drug rehab centers to stay put

Government and municipal officials yesterday rejected calls by Athens hoteliers for the eviction of drug rehabilitation units and brothels from the city center ahead of the August Olympics. Health Minister Nikitas Kaklamanis, who last month rebutted implicit calls from Deputy Public Order Minister Christos Markoyiannakis for the removal of drug addicts from the capital ahead of the Games, said hoteliers had no business making such a demand. Athens Mayor Dora Bakoyannis said there was no question of «sweeping the problem of drugs under the carpet. «Athens has no intention of donning an Olympic mask,» she said. «Hotel owners should reconsider their proposal.» The chairman of the Greek Hoteliers’ Association, Loukas Douvas, said drug addicts have been known to rob hotel employees, while dealers hang around rehab centers.

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