Greeks march on Athens US embassy to protest killings | News | DW | 17.11.2014
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Greeks march on Athens US embassy to protest killings

Thousands have rallied across Greece to mark the anniversary of the former dictatorship's suppression of dissent. Police used tear gas and stun grenades to disperse demonstrators at some spots.

An estimated at least 20,000 people marched through Athens on Monday to commemorate the 1973 student uprising against Greece's military dictatorship, which held power from 1967 to 1974.

About 7,000 officers policed the annual march to the US embassy. In the northern port city of Thessaloniki, about 14,000 people marched peacefully to the local consulate.

The 1973 Athens Polytechnic uprising challenged the dictatorship, and police and the army responded by opening fire against demonstrators and bystanders around a campus in the capital. The regime collapsed the following year.

Greece Demonstration

Students carry a blood-stained flag in honor of the up to 50 people killed in the uprising

Although the annual protests commemorate the US's backing of the dictatorship, participants at more recent rallies have also voiced anger at harsh ongoing austerity measures instituted during the country's recession and enforced by the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund.

Though the austerity measures have proved unpopular, it appears that the bodies will not allow Greece to exit the external rescue plan.

In 2012, the measures and police response saw protests grow increasingly violent, with one German official attacked for his country's support of austerity. A series of general strikes also repeatedly shut the country down. This year, protesters also shouted slogans against the government as they marched past parliament.

mkg/se (dpa, AP, Reuters)

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