An­gry pro­test­ers tar­get politi­cians

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

Health Min­is­ter An­dreas Lover­dos sug­gested yes­ter­day that a demon­stra­tion out­side Par­lia­ment on Tues­day night, which obliged po­lice to evac­u­ate lawmakers from a back exit in the build­ing, and an at­tack on a del­e­ga­tion of MPs on the Io­nian is­land of Corfu the next evening by pro­test­ers throw­ing stones, had been po­lit­i­cally guided.

“Shame on those who in­sti­gate these things. Shame on them!” Lover­dos said dur­ing a heated dis­cus­sion in Par­lia­ment. “We should bring the is­sue to Par­lia­ment be­cause there are po­lit­i­cal forces be­hind those who throw stones and jeer,” Lover­dos added be­fore di­rectly ask­ing a Com­mu­nist Par- ty (KKE) deputy to ex­plain Wed­nes­day’s nights events on Corfu. “Did you set up the as­sault on Corfu?” the min­is­ter asked Har­alam­bos Har­alam­bous. The lat­ter ex­pressed in­dig­na­tion at the ques­tion and asked whether it had been tar­geted at him or at KKE as a whole.

Mean­while, on Corfu, lo­cal authorities ex­pressed ex­as­per­a­tion over Wed­nes­day night’s in­ci­dent, which obliged MPs to flee the main port on a boat with its lights dimmed to elude an an­gry mob. The group chased the del­e­ga­tion of around 40 Greek and Euro­pean deputies – in­clud­ing Deputy La­bor Min­is­ter Anna Dalara and lo­cal MP An­gela Gerekou – as they con­cluded a dis­cus­sion on il­le­gal im­mi­gra­tion. Some threw stones and other ob­jects at the MPs with one stone nar­rowly miss­ing a del­e­ga­tion mem­ber’s child.

Corfu Mayor Yian­nis Trepeklis said the in­ci­dent had dam­aged the is­land’s im­age as the tourism sea­son be­gins. “This is not the im­age we want to pro­ject. We have learned to wel­come peo­ple,” he said.

In a re­lated de­vel­op­ment, late yes­ter­day a group of pro­test­ers threw eggs, yo­gurt and stones at gov­ern­ment spokesman Gior­gos Pe­talo­tis while he was vis­it­ing a re­tire­ment home in Ar­gy­roupoli, south­east­ern Athens.

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