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A Political Suicide: Thousands Attend Christoulas’ Funeral

Relatives, friends, members of left political parties and civic movements, common people who didn’t know him… Some two thousand mourners, they all gathered at the First Cemetery in Athens on Saturday afternoon to say farewell to Dimitris Christoulas. The retired pharmacist who committed suicide just a few meters away from the Greek parliament.


photo: @skar

In a highly symbolic act, Christoulas shot himself on the head behind a tree at Syntagma Square, opposite the Greek parliament. He left a note, invoking the economic crisis and the austerity measures and urged the youth to take the arms.

Dimitris Christoulas, 77, was not just a retiree, one of the many anonymous low pensioners who struggle to survive and escape starvation due to the harsh austerity measures imposed by Greece’s lenders. Chirstoulas was member of the civic movement “I Don’t Pay” and had apparently joined the Indignant Greeks movement during the protests of summer 2011.

His suicide shocked the public opinion in Greece because the majority of people understood his message. A political motivated suicide to raise awareness and shake the Greeks who seem to accept the rash impoverishment of their lives in a deeply corrupt system. The self-sacrifice of a man who felt he had to do something against the current economic, political and social situation.

In a heartbreaking letter sent to the press, his daughter Emmy Christoulas, 37, spoke of her father as a ‘sensible visioner’ and asked the press to refer to him with his name and not as a ‘retired pharmacist’.

“‘Only uprisings try tyrants. The people don’t go to court, they unleash lightning’, said Emmy Christoulas in front of her father’s coffin, reitating that his suicide was a political act.

With clenched fists and slogans like “Rolling blood asks for revenge” and “It wasn’t a suicide, it was a state murder”  the mourners attended Christoulas funeral ceremony and then headed towards the Syntagma Square and the parliament.


Dimitris Christoulas will be cremated in Bulrgaria.

A retired teacher, 78, shot himself in Kavala on Friday. A retired man, 75, hang himself from a tree in Volos today. A 37-year old man attempted suicide with a rifle in Chios on Thrusday. The list of suicides is growing with alarming speed in Greece of austerity, recession and hopelessness…

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  1. Qu’il demeure en paix.

    One question : some reports in France claim he was struggling with cancer. But I cannot find something precise about this on the net. Do you know anything?

    Thank you.

  2. keeptalkinggreece

    this rumor has been considered a defamation attempt for obvious reasons

  3. To me it doesn’t matter if he was healthy, sick or bankrupt. His written message was strong and hit people in the heart. That is his legacy.
    Why does it not matter? If he had cancer, he would not have gotten the medicines to be cured. Cancer patients are send home after just one dose of chemo when they need more. And here KTG has reported several times how people have to shop for cancer medicine themselves and often can not get it or after weeks of delays and they have to cough up the sometimes thousands of euro’s themselves and try to get the money back from the bankrupt health insurance funds.
    Same goes for bankruptcy. No business or individual who is not VERY well ‘connected’ has had any loans from the Greek bank the last year or so.
    This state and this society is totally defunct by now. And it just survives on the personal structures that still are in tact. That obviously was not enough to safe this old man. And to me, that is why his suicide had the initial hard impact it had.