February 3, 2023

Athens News

News in English from Greece

Taxi driver shoots Pakistani man in the head in central Athens

A taxi driver pulled out a gun and shot a Pakistani migrant in the head in downtown Athens on May 2. The bullet passed on a tangent, only a few centimeters from the eye. He was taken by ambulance to the hospital, where doctors stitched the wounded man.

According to a statement by the Movement Against Racism and Fascism, KEERFA, the incident took place at 9:15 am Monday as the victim and several other Pakistani migrants were returning from an Eid ul-Fitr celebration at the end of the holy month of Ramadan. Ali Riyaz, 26, was walking towards his home in the Patisia district of Athens with four friends. The men were dressed in the traditional clothes of their country, trousers and long white shirtsso they were easy to identify.

The victim recalls that a taxi drove up to them, the driver of which opened the window and, pulling out a gun, shouted “F *** Muslims!” shot them 3 or 4 times. The victim only had time to shout: “What are you doing?”, and in the next moment he felt a burning sensation in his head and dizziness. His friends found a bullet on the sidewalk and handed it over to the police.

KEERFA has claimed a clear “racist-motivated attack” and blames the New Democracy government for its Islamophobic racist campaigns with police operations against migrants, harassment and opposition to migrants at the border.” According to the anti-racism movement, “as we approach June 15, the day of the hearing of the appeal of the sentenced members of the Golden Dawn, the fascists stage high-profile actions, carrying out bloody racist attacks in the vicinity of Athens.”

State broadcaster ERT, citing police sources, said the bullets were fired from pneumatic weapons. Police have launched an investigation to locate the taxi driver. The victim and his friends said that the taxi driver who attacked them was driving a Mercedes car.

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