Some 30,000 people marched Saturday in an anti-war and anti-globalization demonstration that also saw anarchist attacks on banks, shops and police vehicles.
Police said groups of hooded anarchists torched at least four banks, smashed shop windows, and threw gasoline bombs at police buses outside the capital’s police headquarters before running off down side streets.
Officers used tear gas to disperse a small group of anarchists near the U.S. Embassy just north of the city center, and in central Syntagma Square, where rioters threw stones and chairs at a McDonald’s restaurant.
One policeman and two demonstrators were injured, and 30 suspected rioters were detained, authorities said.
The clashes erupted as some 30,000 anti-globalization and anti-war demonstrators marched peacefully through the city center.
“We want jobs not bombs,” read one of the many banners carried by marchers, who stopped briefly outside the U.S. and British embassies before heading to Syntagma Square.
The march was organized by the European Social Forum, which is holding a four-day meeting on the outskirts of Athens.
The march, which also included representatives of workers unions, left-wing groups and about 10,000 foreign activists, brought public transport services in central Athens to a halt, while shops shut down.