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On June 19, 2024, Frixos Drakontidis was reporting live from the scene of a fire in Varis-Koropiou, a southern suburb of the capital Athens, when an unidentified man approached him and asked him to leave the premises of a company hit by the blaze.

When Drakontidis refused, saying that he was a journalist with Protothema news site, the man and two others punched him in the head multiple times, pushed him to the ground, and continued to beat him, according to media reports, including a video filmed by a local TV crew.

Drakontidis told CPJ that he had filed a criminal complaint with the police and identified his attackers as employees of the company but he had received no updates on the investigation as of July 10.

Drakontidis said he lost consciousness for a few seconds when he fell down and injured his back and hands, for which he sought treatment in a nearby hospital.

The Journalists’ Union of Athens Daily Newspapers condemned the incident as as an attack on freedom of the press and freedom of expression.

Almost no other country in the European Union has experienced as many physical attacks on journalists in the last few years as Greece, CPJ and partners said in a letter to the European Commission in February, calling for Greek authorities to be held to account.

CPJ’s email requesting comment from the Hellenic Police, the national police service that oversees such investigations, did not receive a reply.

Source of original article: Europe & Central Asia Archives – Committee to Protect Journalists (cpj.org).
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