One dead and many asylum seekers injured in Athens

Monday evening, thousands protested against the police attacks on immigrants in Greece. 28 October 2008. Pakistani immigrants and Greek rights activists gathered in the center of Athens to protest alleged police violence towards migrants seeking asylum in Greece. The protesters marched following the coffin of Pakistani asylum seeker killed during the police attacks.

A human rights group says more than 3,000 people took part in the peaceful protest, calling for the resignation of Interior Minister Procopis Pavlopoulos. Police have no estimate for the demonstrators.

In the early morning of Sunday the 26th, police charged immigrants queuing outside the central immigration office of Athens waiting to register for asylum status.

The group, Stop the War Coalition, says 15 immigrants were injured and Montaser Mohammed Ashraf, 24, suffered fatal injuries when he fell into a riverbed trying to escape police.

Police deny any involvement in the Pakistani’s death.

Greece approved only 140 of the 20,692 asylum applications made in 2007, according to the UN refugee agency. Tens of thousands of illegal migrants enter Greece every year.

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