Greek police union wants to arrest EU/IMF officials

ATHENS Fri Feb 10, 2012 8:10am EST

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ATHENS (Reuters) - Greece's largest police union has threatened to issue arrest warrants for officials from the country's European Union and International Monetary Fund lenders for demanding deeply unpopular austerity measures.

In a letter obtained by Reuters Friday, the Federation of Greek Police accused the officials of "...blackmail, covertly abolishing or eroding democracy and national sovereignty" and said one target of its warrants would be the IMF's top official for Greece, Poul Thomsen.

The threat is largely symbolic since legal experts say a judge must first authorize such warrants, but it shows the depth of anger against foreign lenders who have demanded drastic wage and pension cuts in exchange for funds to keep Greece afloat.

"Since you are continuing this destructive policy, we warn you that you cannot make us fight against our brothers. We refuse to stand against our parents, our brothers, our children or any citizen who protests and demands a change of policy," said the union, which represents more than two-thirds of Greek policemen.

"We warn you that as legal representatives of Greek policemen, we will issue arrest warrants for a series of legal violations ... such as blackmail, covertly abolishing or eroding democracy and national sovereignty."

The letter was also addressed to the European Central Bank's mission chief in Greece, Klaus Masuch, and the former European Commission chief inspector for Greece, Servaas Deroose.

Policemen have borne the brunt of the anger of massed protesters who frequently march to parliament and clash with police in riot gear. Chants of "Cops, pigs, murderers!" are regularly hurled at policemen or scribbled on walls.

Thousands turned out Friday for the latest protest in Athens, this time against new austerity measures that include a 22 percent cut in the minimum wage.

A police union official said the threat to 'refuse to stand against' fellow Greeks was a symbolic expression of solidarity and did not mean police would halt their efforts to stop protests getting out of hand.

(Reporting by Lila Chotzoglou, Writing by Deepa Babington, editing by Tim Pearce)

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Comments (11)
federick wrote:
Dear Lucas Papademos;

Arab spring is coming to a neighborhood close to you…

Feb 10, 2012 8:28am EST  --  Report as abuse
Renox wrote:
Well done! It is time to go after the IMF Maffia. Start with Christine Lagarde! Since Brazil kicked out the IMF, things started getting better over there.
The IMF is now eying European exploitation as they have nowhere to go.

Feb 10, 2012 9:17am EST  --  Report as abuse
alexblack wrote:
Can someone say that this is impossible becouse everyone of EU/IMF officials has diplomatic imunity to enter in every coutry that negosiate…

Feb 10, 2012 10:19am EST  --  Report as abuse
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