Athens Erupts in Riots After Cops Kill Teen

Worst violence in years spreads to other cities
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Dec 7, 2008 5:59 AM CST
Firefighters try to extinguish the fire of a building and a car in central Athens early today. Hundreds of rioters are fighting pitched battles with police in several cities following the fatal shooting...   (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)
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(Newser) – Riots erupted in Athens and several other Greek cities late last night after police shot dead a teenage boy, reports the BBC. Young rioters, many of them anarchists, battled police, firebombed buildings and cars, and smashed shop windows in Athens, Thessaloniki, Komotini, Ioannina, and Crete. It was the worst street violence in Greece in several years. Two officers have been suspended, and an investigation into the shooting is under way.

The Greek government has apologized for the teen's death. Police shot the boy, 16, after a group of teens pelted a patrol car with rocks and were about to firebomb the vehicle, according to police reports. A similar shooting in 1985 led to years of violence. There were no immediate reports of injuries in the riots. People were encouraged to join in the rioting on websites.