Chios to op­pose po­lice ban on fire­work ‘war’ cus­tom

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

Mu­nic­i­pal of­fi­cials on the east­ern Aegean is­land of Chios yes­ter­day said that they plan to defy a ban by po­lice on an Easter cus­tom that has been deemed dan­ger­ous by au­thor­i­ties. The cus­tom of “rocket wars,” an ex­change of thou­sands of fire­works and flares be­tween the res­i­dent of two parishes in the vil­lage of Vrontano on the night of Holy Satur­day, dates back to the Turk­ish oc­cu­pa­tion and has only been banned twice since: dur­ing the World War II Nazi oc­cu­pa­tion and dur­ing the 1967-73 dic­ta­tor­ship. “The po­lice has no choice but to up­hold the law,” a high-rank­ing of­fi­cer told the ANA-MPA news agency yes­ter­day. The of­fi­cer added that the po­lice re­ceived nu­mer­ous com­plaints af­ter last year’s event from cit­i­zens who felt phys­i­cally threat­ened by the dan­ger­ous ex­change of pro­jec­tiles. How­ever, an un­named mu­nic­i­pal of­fi­cial was quoted by ANA-MPA as say­ing that “the rock­ets will fly on Satur­day night,” echo­ing Chios Mayor Mano­lis Vournous, who said he plans to de­fend the cus­tom.

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