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after protests, police chief sacked

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The government announced on Saturday the dismissal of the police chief after the clashes which have multiplied between police and protesters since the train accident which claimed the lives of 57 people. During the latest demonstration, riot police were filmed charging and beating peaceful protesters in Syntagma Square, Athens.

He will not have withstood the crisis. The Greek police chief has been sacked, the government announced on Saturday March 18, after the clashes between law enforcement and demonstrators which have multiplied since the February 28 train accident, the deadliest in Greece. country’s history.

Constantinos Skoumas has been dismissed from his post, according to Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis’ office, less than two months after being confirmed in his post.

The dismissal comes as the police have been criticized for their handling of protests that erupted after the collision between two trains near Larissa (center-east), which left 57 dead.

“We will learn from our mistakes,” said Kyriakos Mitsotakis on Saturday, on a campaign trip to Athens. “An error only becomes a fault if it is repeated”.

“The appointment of a new police chief is aimed at a more effective implementation of the operational plans of a modern police concerning the security of citizens,” the Prime Minister’s office said.

During the latest protest on Thursday, a riot police team was filmed charging and beating peaceful protesters in Syntagma Square in central Athens.

Hours later, a police tow truck slammed into a group of protesters trying to block a street in the capital with trash cans, knocking one to the ground.

The train disaster sparked weeks of protests, sometimes violent, which put pressure on the conservative government of Kyriakos Mitsotakis ahead of elections scheduled for May.

The Minister of Transport had resigned after the disaster. The station master on duty at the time of the accident and three other railway officials have been charged and face life imprisonment.

Unions had long warned of the shortcomings of Greece’s railways, describing an underfunded, understaffed and accident-prone network after a decade of spending cuts.

Acting Transport Minister Georgios Gerapetritis said train services, suspended after the crash, would gradually resume from March 22, to be fully restored by April 16. Automated security systems will be installed by the end of September, he added.

With AFP

France 24-Trans

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