NEWS

In Brief

OFFICER RECOVERING

Policeman gunned down in Exarchia breathing unaided The 21-year-old police officer seriously injured in an attack by unidentified gunmen in Exarchia last week was yesterday breathing unassisted and showing gradual signs of recovery, doctors said. Diamantis Mantzounis, who last week underwent a second operation to stop a stomach hemorrhage, was «stable but improving,» according to Health Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos, who visited him yesterday. DISPUTE SETTLED PASOK pays for Laliotis slander PASOK said yesterday that it would foot the 100,000-euro bill faced by its former general secretary Costas Laliotis after he lost a slander case. Former Prime Minister, Constantine Mitsotakis, who is the current honorary chairman of New Democracy, brought the action against Laliotis in 2002 after the latter claimed that ND and Mitsotakis had funneled illegal political money through an offshore company called Mayo Investment Corporation. A preliminary investigation found no evidence to support the claim and Laliotis was later found guilty of slander. Mitsotakis had asked for Laliotis’s family home in the Peloponnese to be auctioned after the former public works minister delayed paying damages. Mitsotakis said yesterday that he would donate the 100,000 euros to people who suffered as a result of the forest fires in the summer of 2007. Climber death An army helicopter yesterday recovered the body of a 60-year-old climber from a mountain ravine in the northwestern prefecture of Ioannina following a seven-hour rescue effort. The man, who had gone climbing on the slopes of Mitsikeli with his brother is believed to have lost his balance and slipped on a snowy slope into the ravine. Rescue workers had located the 60-year-old while he was still alive but had been unable to remove him from the ravine. Coach chase A man who stole a tourist coach from Athens and may have planned to drive it to Albania evaded police after a long chase in Ioannina, northeastern Greece, authorities said yesterday. Traffic police attempted to stop the coach near Ioannina early yesterday but the driver refused to pull over. Instead, he drove toward the city, prompting several more patrol cars to join the chase. The suspect finally stopped the vehicle in the area of Votanikos and fled. Angry lawyers The Athens Bar Association (ABA) yesterday called the behavior of the police following last Friday’s education rally «unacceptable.» The ABA denounced the reported detention of 16 lawyers and the fact that other lawyers were prevented from entering police headquarters as «unprecedented actions.» Missing fishermen Port Authority officials in Rafina yesterday scoured the coast for a third day, seeking two amateur fishermen, both aged 32, who went missing on Saturday. Navy vessels contributed to the search while Port Authority officials combed the coastline. Firebomb Police in the Cretan port of Hania were seeking the perpetrators of a firebomb attack on the main local post office in the early hours of yesterday that caused serious damage to the building but no injuries.