Protest rally against Grigoropoulos killer’s release marred by violence

Protest rally against Grigoropoulos killer’s release marred by violence

Some 30 hooded individuals clashed with police in the downtown Athens district of Exarchia on Wednesday night, marring an otherwise peaceful protest over the release from prison of a police officer who shot and killed a teenager in the area in 2008.

The assailants hurled Molotov cocktails, rocks, and tables and chairs from nearby bars at a riot police squad stationed outside the office of the PASOK party on Harilaou Trikoupi.

No injuries were reported and two people have been arrested over the incident.

The violence came a couple of hours after a few dozen people had gathered a few streets away, at the spot where 15-year-old Alexis Grigoropoulos was shot by police special guard Epameinondas Korkoneas.

The gathering was organized to protest the latter's release from prison on Tuesday following a decision by an appeals court in central Greece to reduce his life sentence to 13 years.

Korkoneas was released after having served one-third of his sentence under the provisions of the new penal code introduced by the previous government during its last days in power.

There is a memorial at the location on the corner of Mesolongiou and Tzavela streets where the killing took place on the night of December 6, 2008, an incident that sparked widespread riots in Athens and other Greek cities.

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