A police officer and a staff member of a church were wounded Thursday morning by the blast of an improvised explosive device (IED) in central Athens. The events took place outside a famous church in the center of the Greek capital.
No one has claimed responsibility yet. The church of Agios Dionysios in Skoufa is located in the heavily guarded luxury district Kolonaki that borders Exarchia, a neighborhood where police and anarchists regularly collide.
Both wounded have been taken to the hospital. Greek media reported that their injuries are not life-threatening.
Father Symeon Voliotis, an aide at the archbishop’s office, said: “Any action that threatens life or disturbs the peace must be condemned.”
“My first thought was that someone homeless may have been hurt because they often seek shelter there. But fortunately, that was not the case.”
"The policeman saw a box outside the entrance of the church and thought it strange so he went to investigate. The blast was not too powerful, the officer was wounded in his face and hands, "said a police spokesman.
Small-scale attacks on companies, state buildings, police and politicians are not uncommon in Greece, which has a long history of political violence.
On December 17, a powerful bomb exploded outside private Greek television station Skai, causing extensive damage but no injuries.
Again, there was no immediate claim of responsibility but armed far-left and anarchist groups have attacked news media outlets in the past.
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Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras issued a statement condemning the "attack by cowardly and dark forces against democracy itself."
He added: "I express my frank solidarity with the broadcaster's journalists and employees."
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