Greek police says all international air mail and parcel services to end from the country will be suspended for two days after at least 11 other letter bombs were detected in Athens, Tuesday. One was addressed to French President Nicolas Sarkozy, two others to the Greek parliament and eight to the embassies of Bulgaria, Russia, Germany, Switzerland, Mexico, Chile, the Netherlands and Belgium. In addition were one bombs destined for the Europol office in the Netherlands, and one for the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg.
“Both packages contained explosive devices.”
In Berlin, the German chancellery was on high alert after police destroyed a bomb addressed to Angela Merkel. The parcel was sent from Greece by air mail and UPS delivery and was similar to the Athens letter bombs, according to the German interior ministry. The package, with the Greek ministry of economy listed as the sender, contained explosives hidden in the covers of a book.
It was detonated by security forces in a building adjacent to the chancellor’s office. Ms Merkel herself was not in Berlin at the time, Reuters reports.
A suspicious parcel was detected at the Bologna airport in northern Italy and caught fire when it was searched, AFP reports. Nobody was hurt, but the airport was temporarily closed down and several flights got re-routed to other Italian airports.
Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou condemned the bombing attempts, which are attributed by the police to anarchists. The perpetrators were trying to “disturb the social peace in the country through criminal acts,” he says.
A parcel bomb exploded at the Swiss embassy in Athens after an explosive device was thrown into the courtyard of the building. However, there has been no reports of injuries or deaths.
It happened in spite of heightened security in the Greek capital, after a mail bomb exploded at a delivery company on Monday. A suspicious package was also found at the Bulgarian and Chilean embassies.
Russia Today reports:
Two Men Arrested
Two men, aged 25 and 22, has been arrested in connection with the plot.
One of them is a chemistry student who was seized wearing a wig and a bulletproof vest, the Irish Times reports.
He is believed to be linked to the radical group “Conspiracy of Cells of Fire,” which has claimed responsibility for numerous attacks against Greek government buildings and banks.
The group is believed to be linked to the urban guerrillas who have killed police officers, a prominent journalist, and now vows to turn Greece into a “war zone.”
The anarchist movements are fuelled by popular anger over harsh austerity measures passed by the Papandreou government in return for an EU-IMF bailout earlier this year.
A government spokesman called the bombing campaign a deliberate attempt to “terrorise” public opinion ahead of Sunday local elections, according to the EUobserver.com.
The air mail bombs come only a few days after two powerful explosive devices hidden in ink cartridges were detected on-board passenger planes in packages shipped from Yemen to the US.
One bomb travelled on two passenger planes before being seized in Dubai, while the other passed through Germany and almost slipped through Britain before being discovered on a plane at East Midlands Airport.
On Monday Germany introduced a ban on all passenger and cargo flights from Yemen. The move has been criticised by the Yemeni government as unfairly hitting tourists, business people and anti-terrorism fighters in the country.
In what now seems as a prediction of these events last month, the US government issued a blanket travel alert for its citizens visiting Europe, urging them to be cautious when in tourist hotspots, as fresh terrorist attacks may be under way.
The governments of EU responded differently to the alert. Germany notably being the most sanguine, without raising its threat level or issuing travel alerts to its own citizens.
Anyway – the social unrest in Europe have reached a new and higher level.
- A European Revolution by December?
- Summer’s Over; Greek Protests Continues
- Greece About To Enter The Death Spiral
- 2000yr-Old Secret Organization Makes Threats Against Greek Navy Supplier
- G20 Protesters Turns Violente; Police Cars On Fire, 150 Arrested
- France Hit by 3rd National Strike In 12 Days
- Global Economy On Fast Track To Disaster
- A Report To Make You Go “Hmmm…”
- Roubini: “The Worst Is Yet To Come”
- UPDATE 2-Germany wants EU to act on air freight bombs (reuters.com)
- Greece Halts Mail, Hunts for Bombing Suspects (abcnews.go.com)
- Greece warns of more bombs (cbc.ca)
- You: Greece stops overseas air shipments after bombs found (earthtimes.org)
- Greece suspends air freight after bombs found (calgaryherald.com)
- More Greek mail bombs may be on their way, say police (guardian.co.uk)