Firebomb wounds police officer outside top Greek judge’s home

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A police officer guarding the home of Greece’s top judge was wounded in a “murderous” firebomb attack early Thursday in an Athens suburb, the police said.

“It’s clearly an attack with murderous intent against a police officer,” police spokeswoman Constantia Dimoglidou told Action24 TV.

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State agency ANA said the officer stationed outside the home of Supreme Court president Ioanna Klapa was left with second-degree burns to his face and hand.

Klapa was one of the chief investigative magistrates in a 2020 trial of neo-Nazi party Golden Dawn that saw heavy sentences handed down to leading members.

Dimoglidou said the attackers were “monitoring” the guard’s movements and struck when he got into the patrol vehicle in the early hours of Thursday.

“They pulled up and threw a Molotov at him, to burn this person alive inside the car,” she said, referring to a Motov cocktail bomb.

Dimoglidou said the officer was only able to spot three attackers, but ERT said up to seven people may have been involved.

Five broken bottles believed to have been used in the attack were found, it said.

“The anti-terror squad is investigating. These people will be arrested, that is certain,” Police Minister Michalis Chrysohoidis told Skai Radio.

The officer was in a squad car, ANA said.

Government spokesman Pavlos Marinakis condemned the attack and said the swift arrest of those responsible was an “absolute priority.”

No one has claimed responsibility.

Two people were arrested on June 21 in connection with a spate of bomb attacks last year.

In February, a group calling itself Armed Response sent a letter bomb to a senior judge in Thessaloniki.

The landmark 2020 trial in which Klapa was one of the main magistrates saw Golden Dawn leader Nikos Michaloliakos sentenced to 13-and-a-half years in prison.

Crimes attributed to the group included the 2013 murders of an anti-fascist rapper and a Pakistani migrant, as well as the beatings of Egyptian fishermen and Communist trade unionists.

Michaloliakos was briefly granted conditional release in May but a judicial council this month overturned the decision and he returned to prison.

Golden Dawn, a xenophobic and anti-Semitic organization created by Michaloliakos, was for decades a fringe party until the country’s 2010 debt crisis.

The group then capitalized on public anger over immigration and austerity cuts, entering parliament for the first time in 2012.

At the height of its influence, it was the country’s third biggest party.

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