Amid a spate of attacks of anarchist supporters of N17 terrorist Dimitris Koufodinas, who is on a hunger strike because a prosecutor denied him his seventh legally-mandated furlough, Greek police, judicial authorities, and the government are scampering to find a formula to prevent his death due to his two-week hunger-strike, which would make him a hero among his anarchist followers and open the floodgates for massive acts of violence in Athens and beyond.

According to a medical report cited by his lawyer Ioanna Kourtovik, Koufodinas has lost 12.5 kilos, and is exceptionally weak, with low blood pressure and low pH levels.

Forced feeding on hold

A Volos prosecutor vetoed his seventh furlough and his supporters are demanding that this prosecutorial authority be abolished.

The Volos prosecutor has ordered forced feeding of the prisoner but Koufodinas has refused and doctors have refused to comply on grounds of medical ethics.

Judicial authorities are reportedly examining the interpretation that “Dimitris Koufodinas made general historical references to domestic urban guerrilla warfare and there is no issue of him applauding the actions on 17N” so as to transcend the impasse and objections based on his unrepentant stance.

Koufodinas is serving 11 life sentences for as many murders and has never expressed regret, much less remorse, for his crimes, but this is not stipulated as a criterion in approving furloughs.

Supreme Court Prosecutor reviews furlough denial

In an unprecedented move, Supreme Court Prosecutor Xeni Dimitriou has requested and is reviewing his file to decide if she will reverse the lower court prosecutor’s order. She has not yet ruled.

Barrage of violent anarchist attacks

Authorities have for the last two weeks been confronted with a barrage of violent attacks against property – between three and five each day – by anti-authority groups  and anarchist groups such as Rouvikonas, which vandalised the wall of the US Ambassador’s residence in Athens with black paint.

That included two violent 14 May pre-dawn attacks – a fire bomb attack on the Kaisariani Police Precinct by 10 hooded individuals and the torching of the car of veteran police reporter Mina Moustaka in the middle class suburb of Papagou.

On 7 May, 20 Koufodinas supporters attacked the police precinct in the anarchist stronghold of Exarheia with two fire bombs.

Fear of armed attacks if Koufodinas dies

Police top brass are seeking an urgent resolution of the issue, as they fear that if his health condition further deteriorates or if he dies there may be blood spilt by two or three armed anti-authority groups which remain active.

For these groups Koufodinas remains a powerful symbol and role-model.

Procedural delays

There are concerns that the Supreme Court Prosecutor’s ruling may take a few days due to procedures and if the decision of the Volos prosecutor is reversed it will take some time for a new Volos judicial council to convene and approve the furlough with a new prosecutor and legal rationale.

Still, it is not certain that the judicial council will approve the furlough or if it will raise objections, as prosecutors who recommended one year ago that Koufodinas be definitively released are facing disciplinary review by the justice ministry.