Railway disaster in Greece: the Prime Minister asks for forgiveness to the families of the victims

Sylvie Claire / March 6, 2023

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis asked for forgiveness from the families of the victims in a solemn address on Sunday after the train disaster that killed 57 people and sparked immense anger in Greece.
 
As Prime Minister, I owe it to everyone, but especially to the relatives of the victims, (to ask for) forgiveness,” he wrote in a message addressed to Greeks and published on his Facebook account. “In the Greece of 2023, it is not possible that two trains run in opposite directions on the same line and nobody notices ».
 
We cannot, will not and must not hide behind the human error” attributed to the stationmaster, insisted the conservative leader.
 
This address to the country comes as on Sunday morning in Thessaloniki, the country’s second largest city where many of the victims lived, Molotov cocktails were again thrown at a platoon of riot police, the Greek agency ANA reported.
 
The station chief of Larissa, the city closest to the scene of the accident between a train connecting Athens to Thessaloniki, in the north, and a convoy of goods, has admitted his responsibility for the disaster.
 
Presented by the media as inexperienced and in office for a short time, this 59-year-old man is to be heard by the courts on Sunday with a view to a possible charge of “manslaughter by negligence ».
 
However, the dilapidated rail network, various problems in the signaling system and safety on the railroads were also pointed out, while union representatives had sounded the alarm in recent weeks about the shortcomings of the rail network and the lack of personnel.
 
Angry Greeks are planning to demonstrate their discontent once again on Sunday in the middle of the day in front of the Parliament, in the center of Athens.
 
In Athens and Thessaloniki, these rallies have led to clashes between police and demonstrators in recent days.
 
On Friday, angry protesters had chanted “murderers” in front of the headquarters of the Hellenic Train company in the capital, and inscribed this word in red letters on the front of the building.
 
The Prime Minister will attend a morning service in the Orthodox Cathedral of Athens, while all churches in the country have planned to pay tribute to the victims of what has been described by the authorities as “a national tragedy ».

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