Accessibility links

Athens Protest Marks Anniversary of Teen's Killing by Police

  • VOA News

University students rally to mark the anniversary of the shooting of a 15-year-old student by a policeman in 2008 in Athens, Dec. 6, 2014.

University students rally to mark the anniversary of the shooting of a 15-year-old student by a policeman in 2008 in Athens, Dec. 6, 2014.

Thousands of Greeks took to the streets of Athens on Saturday to mark the sixth anniversary of a police killing of an unarmed teenager in the capital.

The march soon turned violent, with protesters damaging storefronts, setting fires and throwing homemade bombs. Police fired tear gas to disperse the crowds.

Alexandros Grigoropoulos was 15 in 2008 when he was shot and killed by police. The shooting led to the country's worst riots in years.

The 5,000 or more protesters marching Saturday were also showing their support for a friend of Grigoropoulos, jailed anarchist Nikos Romanos, 21. He was given a 15-year sentence for bank robbery in October. He has been on a hunger strike for more than three weeks, demanding to be allowed to leave prison to attend university classes. He is currently hospitalized under police supervision.

Protesters are calling the treatment of Romanos another example of police abuse.

"Six years after the state's murder of Alexis Grigoropoulos, we're close to a second state murder," said protester Yannis Dimitropoulos. "We see in general how the state won't take a single step back, how it is becoming more authoritarian, and we see how we're close to a second murder, that of Nikos Romanos."

XS
SM
MD
LG