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live Spirits in Syntagma are stirring up again

05 April 2012 / 19:04:43  GRReporter
2220 reads

Victoria Mindova

"His blood weighs on your hands, traitors", reads a placard on the tree, where the 77-year-old pharmacist killed himself on Wednesday morning. For the second day in a row, people of all ages are visiting the grievous place and are leaving flowers, candles and farewell notes. Some are angry, others are filled with words of sympathy. The event has stirred up the spirits in Greece and the wake in Syntagma most likely will grow into a new wave of unrest.
 
A specially created event on Facebook invites people to gather in the square outside parliament at 6 pm. The manifesto of the event is calling on the people to respond to what has happened and, like the movement of discontented, to stay in Syntagma to protest. Many of the people active in the summer unrest last year can again be seen among the people in the square.

"We do not choose death. We do not want other victims," reads the website of the protest initiators. The youth organization of the Communist Party joined it too. About 100 people from PAME came from Omonia with flags in their hands to participate in the general protest. Security forces are apparently anticipating a new wave of anger, and to prevent the concentration of people and riots, they closed the underground station at Syntagma at 5:30 pm.

Citizens had already gathered at the place of the sad event by noon. The majority of them were retired or elderly people. However, the faces of some active participants in the movement of discontented, who had occupied the centre of Athens in the middle of last year, could be seen among  them. Among those commemorating the pharmacist were representatives of the Union of Pharmacists of Dodecanese and other areas, who laid a wreath of white flowers. "My pension was reduced too and one my daughters was dismissed last December, but we should not despair," said with tears in her eyes an old woman, who had come to put a bunch of flowers. The lottery tickets seller in the square told GRReporter, that more people gathered on the second day of the wake and added, "It is not easy, but we must be strong. And we should not abandon ourselves to despair." It remains a mystery to her why the pharmacist had chosen this particular way to take his life.

According to the confessions of his daughter, the deceased had no financial obligations to institutions or individuals, but his pension was significantly reduced like all the other elderly people in Greece at the height of the economic crisis. "With his suicide, he wanted to send a political message. He was politically active and very angry," a neighbour of the pharmacist told the Greek media. 

Tags: SocietyPoliticsSuicideSyntagmaDiscontented
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