Thessaloniki university rector calls for probe into sexual harassment claims

Thessaloniki university rector calls for probe into sexual harassment claims

Professor Nikos Papaioannou, rector of Thessaloniki's Aristotle University (TAU), said on Monday he had informed the city’s prosecuting authorities about media reports in which three former students accused two retired professors of sexual harassment.

“I have formally requested the intervention of Justice, in order for any such case concerning the University to be investigated in depth and the perpetrators held accountable and punished,” he said in a statement to state-run news agency ANA-MPA.

Papaioannou said no official or unofficial complaint has been filed at the university.

Two of the former students revealed in a closed Facebook forum of TAU alumni that they had been sexually assaulted by a now retired professor from the university’s Philosophy Department.

The unnamed women, then 20 and 22, said the unnamed professor performed lewd acts against them during meetings in his office to discuss their grades.

One of the women said she revealed the attack to a young male professor who said he believed her but could not intervene “because he was only a lecturer,” according to a report on Greek website Parallaxi.

The third woman said she was sexually harassed by a “well-known” professor in the Geology Department of the same university who kept failing her in his class. The former student alerted the then head of the department, only to be told that other female students had tried to file complaints against him without succeeding.

She eventually suspended her studies and returned in 2016 when the professor in question had retired.

The accusations come in the heels of a revelation made by a former Olympic golden medalist who accused a senior member of Greece’s sailing federation of raping her when she was 21.

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