The dark side of historic Kypseli

Petty criminals, drug dealers and protection merchants hang out in the part of Kypseli bounded by Kypseli Square, Fokionos Negri and Patission streets and Amerikis Square. Drug users shoot up in store doorways, prostitutes ply their trade on the sidewalks, and the pedestrian zone on Fokionos Negri is full of people doing deals, peddlers of contraband merchandise and beggars. «It’s out of control,» said Chrysoula Georgiopoulou, who was actively involved some years ago in getting Kypseli Market listed for preservation. «I thought the entire area would be revamped but a family can’t even go for a stroll along Fokionos Negri. Everyone has a story of violence to tell,» she said. «My purse was stolen in broad daylight at the entrance to my apartment block. A friend had her necklace stolen at 8 p.m. in the summer, when it was still light. Nobody dares say a word.»

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