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At protest, Greek police seek friendlier image

At protest, Greek police seek friendlier image

About 400 police officers demonstrated in Athens against violence Thursday, following riots in Greek cities and attacks on police by a terrorist group.
Some protesters were in uniform as they gathered in Athens' main Syntagma Square.
Last months' riots were sparked by the fatal police shooting of a teenage boy Dec. 6. Police were targeted in shootings Dec. 23 and Jan. 5 that seriously wounded one officer.
The far-left group Revolutionary Struggle has claimed responsibility.
"Our colleagues are not afraid," said Giorgos Vlachos of the Greek police officers association. "Of course we remain on guard _ that is our duty."
Vlachos said police are hoping to improve their image.
The Beatles' song "Let it be" blared as police gathered under a banner that read "no to violence."
"We are protesting because we are part of society," said Vassilis Alimaras, a 23-year-old policeman. "Violence against the Greek police is violence against Greek society. We're against any kind of violence."
In a 9,000-word statement published in an Athens newspaper Thursday, Revolutionary Struggle vowed to continue attacks on police.
"The only way to disarm the cops is for revolutionaries and the armed public to disarm them," the group said.
Revolutionary Struggle first appeared in 2003 and has carried out at least six bombings, targeting police stations, government ministries, a bank and a courthouse.
Two years ago, the group claimed responsibility for attacking the U.S. Embassy in Athens with a rocket-propelled grenade. Afterward, the United States offered a $1 million reward for information leading to the capture of the group's members.


Updated : 2021-07-25 15:46 GMT+08:00