Residents of Markopoulo, eastern Attica, will be able to sleep easier after the Council of State ordered two local quarries to shut down, putting an end to early-morning dynamite explosions. In a ruling made public yesterday, the court decided that the two illegal quarries must stop operating, reversing a recent decision that allowed the companies to operate for the next few years. «At last, we have an end to this affair. For 33 years, the two quarries have been operating illegally,» said Markopoulo Mayor Fotis Magoulas. «The problem with the dust was huge. Often the entire area seemed covered by a large cloud of dust,» he added. Residents said they also feared for their safety, as the explosions at the quarry sites were extremely powerful and were felt throughout the area.