Greece hit by twin bomb blasts

Last Updated: Saturday, May 15, 2010 - 00:30

Athens: Bomb blasts at a prison and a court
rocked two Greek cities in 24 hours in a warning that
militants still pose a threat to the country as it battles a
devastating economic crisis.

The blasts came as Turkish premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan
began a landmark trip to Athens today promising a "new era" in
ties between the long-term rivals, but police ruled out any
link between the visit and the attacks.

Police today blamed far-left militants for the first
bomb, which exploded overnight outside an Athens high security
prison. The blast, heard across the capital, injured one
woman.

The second bomb went off in a bathroom in the main court
building in Thessaloniki today and slightly injured a court
employee, who is in hospital, said Manolis Lampsidis, head of
the city`s local bar association.

Television images showed dozens of people rushing out of
the building, which houses several tribunals and was working
normally when the blast detonated.

The blast blew a hole in the floor above, state
television NET reported.

The court complex has a police guard of around 30
officers but visitors are rarely searched on arrival and no
scanners are in place, a local judicial source said, adding
that around 1,000 people were inside at the time.

The attacks came as the Greek government confronted
widespread opposition to an austerity programme needed to
secure an European Union and the IMF bailout totalling 110
billion euros.

PTI



First Published: Saturday, May 15, 2010 - 00:30

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