Market monitors to persist

Government officials vowed to persist with tough quality and price monitoring after Development Ministry inspectors were attacked by traders during a visit yesterday morning to the capital’s largest public food market. The ministry officials were chased away by enraged traders, and had to return accompanied by a police escort to the Athinas Street complex in the city center, which combines a meat and fish market with rows of fruit and vegetable stalls on the other side of the road. Deputy Development Minister Yiannis Papathanassiou said the inspectors were threatened, and vowed to continue with inspections and strict penalties for traders caught breaking the law. The ministry launched a series of tougher inspections this week ahead of the Christmas holidays, and is also proposing to crack down on illegal street vendors. Development Minister Dimitris Sioufas said he is planning new draft legislation next year to regulate street markets and boost consumer protection groups.