Po­lice not in the dark over hit

Pub­lic or­der min­is­ter says ELAS has ev­i­dence from Ha­lan­dri at­tack, slams Mazi­o­tis re­lease as mis­take

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

Four days af­ter un­known gun­men rid­dled the of­fi­cial res­i­dence of Ger­many’s am­bas­sador to Athens with bul­lets from two AK-47 as­sault ri­fles, Pub­lic Or­der Min­is­ter Nikos Den­dias said that the Greek Po­lice (ELAS) is re­view­ing ev­i­dence re­gard­ing the sus­pected ter­ror­ist at­tack while ex­press­ing re­gret over the re­lease of Nikos Mazi­o­tis, a con­victed ter­ror­ist leader who has been on the run since the sum­mer of 2012.

“I can as­sure you that ELAS is not feel­ing its way in the dark... But that of course is far from say­ing that we have been able to build a case file,” Den­dias said in an in­ter­view with Kathimerini, adding that the au­thor­i­ties were also ex­am­in­ing find­ings from the deadly shoot­ings at Golden Dawn’s of­fices in Neo Irak­lio in Novem­ber.

Den­dias fended off sug­ges­tions that Wolf­gang Dold’s house in the north­ern sub­urb of Ha­lan­dri was not ad­e­quately pro­tected, adding how­ever that ELAS man­power falls short of meet­ing grow­ing needs.

“Be­cause of the par­tic­u­lar con­di­tions fac­ing the coun­try over the past six years, the num­ber of po­ten­tial tar­gets is in the hun­dreds or even thou­sands,” he said.

In the same in­ter­view, the con­ser­va­tive min­is­ter also crit­i­cized a ju­di­cial de­ci­sion to re­lease Mazi­o­tis and his wife, Panayiota Roupa, both al­leged mem­bers of Rev­o­lu­tion­ary Strug­gle ter­ror group, from jail af­ter spend­ing the max­i­mum 18 months in pre­trial de­ten­tion.

The de­ci­sion, Den­dias said, was a “colos­sal mis­take.”

Au­thor­i­ties have said that the blood­less hit on Dold’s res­i­dence bears Mazi­o­tis’s hall­marks.

In a sep­a­rate in­ter­view with Kathimerini, the Ger­man en­voy said the at­tack was a bid to throw the debt-hit coun­try off track while voic­ing con­fi­dence that the at­tack would not strain ties be­tween bailed-out Greece and its lead­ing lender.

“At­tacks of this kind will not be able to up­set Greek-Ger­man re­la­tions,” said Dold, stress­ing that it should not af­fect the na­tion’s im­age as a safe desti­na­tion.

“It seems that some peo­ple out there would like to throw the coun­try off track and they deem that the signs of eco­nomic re­cov­ery do not serve their aim,” he said, adding that Ber­lin would con­tinue to sup­port Greece’s re­cov­ery ef­forts.

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