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article imageGreece: Demand for guns up over worries for personal safety

By Katerina Nikolas     Jun 11, 2012 in Crime
Desperate times are fuelling an unprecedented crime wave in Greece. Criminals are targeting Greek homes and attacking pensioners. Worries over personal safety have fuelled the demand for hunting rifles for protection.
Digital Journal recently reported the Greek Citizen Protection Ministry reported "one homicide every two days, 18 robberies every 24 hours and 11 thefts every hour: all this in a country that once enjoyed one of the lowest crime rates in Europe."
On Wednesday Eleftheros Typos reported two men armed with Kalashnikovs burst into a café before noon, in Melissochori,Thebes. Their intent was to seize the pensions of the elderly. The thieves shot two men, including the postman who was delivering the pensions, before stealing €10,000 and escaping on motorbikes. The two victims were both hospitalized.
In the early hours of Thursday morning Albanian robbers broke into three homes in Paiania. Digital Journal reported the thieves threatened a woman at knife-point in her own home. According to Dimokratia News the home of 55-year-old Kyriakos Davaris, who had just been released from hospital, is surrounded by iron railings. Davaris owns a family taverna in Paiania and his two sons both help him when they are back in the village from their university studies. Locals are incensed at the wave of crime targeting the area where hard working people are turned into victims. In this incident one of the Albanian burglars was shot dead.
In the wake of the Paiania shooting Ekathimerini reports a sharp rise in the number of people asking about hunting rifles. They report they spoke to gun shop owners that related most of the requests for rifles were from people that "were quite open about the fact they wanted the guns for personal safety, not hunting.”
Authorities are concerned that more people may begin to take the law into their own hands in vigilante fashion due to the perceived ineffectiveness of the police.
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