Greece Moving Police Forces Around Country into Athens, Crime Squads

ATHENS – In an effort to combat perception that it’s losing control of law and order in Greece’s capital, the New Democracy government has had the Hellenic Police (ELAS) transferring officers from elsewhere in the country into Athens.

That has caused some dissension though, said Kathimerini, as those being moved from their duties are being paid an extra 4,200 euros ($4477) per month in compensation to deal with the extra costs, while teachers, doctors and others assigned to remote spots and islands get nothing to help them.
More than 700 officers are being transferred into Athens to take up patrols and boost visibility as there haven’t been police on foot walking around neighborhoods to give a sense of security.

They are being moved from Arta, Grevena, Evritania, Karditsa and elsewhere to form police squads patrolling areas of western Attica and beyond, areas that have  high crime rates and residents’ worries.

In Athens, the number of crime prevention units (OPKE) has increased from 30 to 74, while the number of teams in Thessaloniki has increased as well but it wasn’t said if the shortfall in the areas from which police were moved would be filled.

The orders entailed the transfer of police officers from provincial areas to the Attica Security Directorate, to staff crime prevention and suppression teams, “due to increased service needs,” the report said.


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