Athens: riots over pensioner's suicide continue into a second day

Posted Apr 6, 2012 by Anne Sewell
Anger and despair is mounting over the tragic suicide of the 77-year-old pensioner, and riots continue into a second day in Athens, Greece.
A woman pushes the shield of a riot police officer in Athens
A woman pushes the shield of a riot police officer in Athens
Video screen capture
Yesterday, Digital Journal reported that protesters in Athens, Greece were rioting over the tragic suicide of Dimitris Christoulas, a retired pharmacist with a wife and a daughter, who could no longer cope with the economic crisis in Greece. He refused to stoop to searching the garbage for food and becoming a burden for his child.
The riots and protests have now continued into a second day. Several youths were seen to be smashing paving stones with hammers and throwing the resulting debris at the riot police in central Athens on Thursday. They chanted "Killers! Killers!". The police used both flash grenades and tear gas on the crowd.
In the video above, a woman can be seen pushing a riot policeman's shield. Photos published by RT clearly show the sheer despair and sadness of the people in Athens.
The late Christoulas has now become a symbol of the desperation felt by the Greek people as a result of the draconian austerity measures being imposed by the Greek government.
Earlier on Thursday around 1,000 protesters laid candles, flowers and messages at the spot where 77-year-old Dimitris Christoulas shot himself.
The demonstration at the improvised shrine included members of leftist groups, teachers, students and "indignants" (protesters).
On Thursday, the Greek Parliament was due to finalize a vote on a new round of painful austerity measures. The latest measures would include reducing pay for 30,000 civil servants and the suspension of collective bargaining agreements.
There was also a peaceful demonstration in the city of Thessaloniki in the wake of the suicide of the pensioner, who has now been described as a martyr, with his death symbolizing the pain and suffering of the Greek people due to the imposition of harsh austerity measures over the past more than 2 years.