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Evros: Police dismisses reports “policeman injured by guards & citizens on patrol”

An unprecedented incident has allegedly taken place in the Evros river: National guards and armed vigilantes on patrol have shot and injured one policeman “mistakenly thinking he was a migrant,” media  have been reporting since early Sunday afternoon.

According to media reports, a group of national guards and local were patrolling the area of Feres, near the Evros Delta. They allegedly fired at a Greek police officer whom they considered as an “illegal migrant attempting to cross the border,” notes newspaper documento.

“The policeman was slightly injured, because he was wearing a bullet-proof vest,” the newspaper notes adding that there was an effort to hide the incident from the media. “However, the injured police officer was taken to hospital where the incident was also registered,” the newspaper added.

The alleged incident reportedly took place on Saturday night.

The news has been circulating for several hours without official announcement confirming or dismissing the allegations.

“Anonymous police sources have confirmed the incident,” wrοte left-wing newspaper avgi, and several news websites. Daily ethnos noted “police sources said police is investigating but nothing has come up so far.”

Later thetoc reported that “the shots were fired in the air” and that “government sources dismissed the claims.”

SYRIZA spokesman Alexandros Haritsis issued a statement calling on the government and the ministry in charge to give answers about the issue, and on the Prime Minister to call off “the self-proclaimed gunmen who threaten everyone, […] before we mourn victims.”

Finally, short before 8:00 pm, the Greek Police issued a statement saying that there was “not such incident.”

Together with national guards, groups of armed vigilantes, locals who have self-proclaimed themselves “border guards” have been patrolling along the Evros river in the South, since beginning of the week. They apprehend migrants who have illegally crossed into Greece and hand them over to the Greek Army and police. The vigilantes are farmers and breeders from the area who know very well all the secret passages and the most inaccessible areas of the Evros Delta. Read our KTG report here.

Left-wing opposition and progressive internet users on social media have criticized the government for allowing patrols against illegal entries to be conducted by armed citizens.

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