Greek riots

10 Dec

If you are not a Greek native, then you don’t get the clear picture of why the riots in Greece started.  This is because you probably don’t know some details about modern Greek history.

The whole thing started when the 37 year old police officer, Epaminondas Korkoneas, shot and killed 15-year-old Alexandros Grigoropoulos in the area of Exarchia, in downtown Athens on Saturday, December 6 2008.

Initialy it was stated that the police officer had fired 3 warning shots and that the kid was killed by accident.

Witnesses stated that he aimed and fired.

  • This takes us back to the 17th of November of 1985 when another 15 year old kid, Michalis Kaltezas, was shot in the back of his head by police officer Thanasis Melistas.  Melistas was sentenced for two and a half years and he got out in 8-1/2 months.
  • On the 16th of November 1980, 20 year old Stamatina Kanelopoulou and 26 year old Iakovos Koumis were beaten to death by police.  None were charged and the killers were never found.
  • During August 1985, 22 year old American citizen Kathrin John Bull was shot dead after her denial to the cops to search her car.
  • In March 1990 another 15 year old student was shot in the city of Preveza. He was killed cause he was trying to break into a video club.
  • In April 1993 police officer Elias Stamatopoulos shot dead 25 year old Giannis Tzitzis in a bar.
  • The musician Theodor Giakas was shot dead in January 1994.
  • In January 1996 police killed an immigrant.
  • In June 1996 police killed 20 year old immigrant Fantil Nambuzi, who tried to steal two watermelons.
  • 45 year old Tasos Mouratis was shot dead by a police officer in front of his kids during November 1996.
  • 26 years old Elias Mexis didn’t stop for a police control in August 1998. He was shot dead.
  • Police killed 17 year old Yugoslavian Marco Bulatovic in Thessaloniki in October 1998.
  • In March 2000, 18 year old Giorgos Atmatzidis didn’t stop for a police control, he was shot dead.
  • Police shot in the head 21 year old Marinos Christopoulos.  He didn’t stop for a control.  It was October 2001.
  • 22 years old Iraklis Maragakis didn’t stop for a police control in December 2003, he was shot in the head.
  • The cops beat up and injured Cypriot student Augoustinos Dimitriou in Thessaloniki during the polytechnic demonstration in 2006.
  • During August 2007, Greek police clashed with African immigrants protesting the death of a Nigerian man in the city of Thessaloniki.

Now, what we have here is police brutality.
The killers remain unpunished.
Alexandros Grigoropoulos’s mother received a phone call by some unknown person that told her to go to the hospital because her son was hurt and she better take a friend with her.
Police never contacted her nor did they go to her door to bring her to the hospital.

As young kids see their parents struggling to make ends meet and they see no justice administrated for criminal activity brought on by people who are committed to “serving and protecting”, the riots started.  All this follows on the heels of ultimate corruption within the church and political inactivity in the massive destruction of fires in 2007.

In Greece money begets power.
The average working citizen, regardless of outcries and demands for justice, reached a boiling point with the ensuing result.

Today, December 10 2008, there is a general strike in Greece.

Further reading:


Greek Riots, Part II – An Outsider’s Perspective:

Greek Riots, Part III: 

Greek Riots – Acropolis:

TapesGoneLoose @ BlogSpot:

Riot Info:

Riot Info #2:


Posted by on December 10, 2008 in Politics



7 responses to “Greek riots

  1. eugene Phu kyaik

    December 10, 2008 at 10:44 am

    justice is sought every where and very few get justice.
    All religions in essence taught not to seek justice. It is something impossible to get and something not worth the effort.
    All religions in essence taught to seek compassion and love which in act is forgiveness, bearing up and sharing. There is the able power that will do justice, that is doing justice. We need to have faith and patience.

  2. tapesgoneloose

    December 11, 2008 at 1:59 am

    I love you for doing this – honestly. Take a look at my latest post (Riot Info) regarding some translations of eyewitness accounts & the like. I’m a passive person, normally speaking, but these are exceptional circumstances. Thank you again for providing the background info.

  3. rock scissors

    December 11, 2008 at 5:59 pm

    Greek anarchists must be stoked falling oil prices have made molotov cocktails affordable again

  4. panole8riambos

    December 11, 2008 at 6:11 pm

    >rock scissors.
    Its not an issue of anarchists only but its an issue of the Greek youth in general. I don’t think there is a single person out there to believe that there are 200.000 anarchists in Greece.
    Morgages and loans as well as police brutallity and constant political scandals, are problems concerning every Greek family.
    It is not only the anarchists that are fed up in Greece…
    And regarding the oil prices, for sure if they come up again, there are rocks out there that cost realy nothing….

  5. sinnaa

    December 11, 2008 at 7:20 pm

    To eugene Phu kyaik:

    Although it is true that the religious leaders have taught us to turn the other cheek and to keep a blind eye to injustices, for how long do you sit and allow someone to punch you before you give an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth?

    The time has come for an overhaul because if any nation’s inhabitants sit silently for much longer, I’m afraid there will be nothing left to fight for …

    When the Nazis came for the communists,
    I remained silent;
    I was not a communist.

    When they locked up the social democrats,
    I remained silent;
    I was not a social democrat.

    When they came for the trade unionists,
    I did not speak out;
    I was not a trade unionist.

    When they came for the Jews,
    I remained silent;
    I was not a Jew.

    When they came for me,
    there was no one left to speak out.

    – A poem attributed to Pastor Martin Niemöller (1892–1984) –

  6. sinnaa

    December 11, 2008 at 7:22 pm

    To tapesgoneloose:

    Firstly, I’d like to thank you for your kind words, and secondly (and more importantly), I’d (we’d) like to thank you immensely for the amazing undertaking you have made in your own blog. I found it most informative and it was wonderful to find things translated into the English language.

    Thanks again!

  7. tapesgoneloose

    December 11, 2008 at 8:32 pm

    The joy is all mine! I’m not an anarchist myself, I’m just outraged by the incident & by the attitude those in power took. There’s something as going too far, & it looks like this time they did. Thank you for the solidarity :)!


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