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Greece Parcel Bombs Tied To Anarchists

RENEE MONTAGNE, Host:

And, Sylvia, these parcel bombs may not, as I've just said, been deadly, but together with the bombs originating in Yemen they have disrupted the international mail cargo system. So, you know, what to do?

SYLVIA POGGIOLI: Well, in the meantime, yesterday, Greece, as you said, imposed a 48 hour stop on all outgoing airmail packages and screened thousands of boxes. And now European governments are very concerned. Officials in Greece and Germany say that they support a Europe-wide tightening of package screening procedures. And this will be on the agenda of an EU meeting of air security experts in Brussels on Friday.

MONTAGNE: Greek police have arrested two young anarchists. Who are they and what do they want?

POGGIOLI: Now, as for the purpose of this campaign, domestic terrorism experts say it's mainly symbolic and not aimed at harming anyone since police say none of the devices examined so far contained lethal amounts of explosives. But the international impact has been considerable.

MONTAGE: So, Sylvia, Greece has had a violent anarchist movement for decades.

POGGIOLI: Now, the Greek paradox is that as long as this anarchist turmoil does not cause fatalities, it enjoys a certain amount of tolerance within society.

MONTAGNE: But, Sylvia, why now? Why these bombs now?

POGGIOLI: But the government of Prime Minister George Papandreou has vowed to crackdown against what he called irresponsible and mindless acts of those who want to undermine the efforts of Greek people trying to put the country and its economy back on track.

MONTAGNE: Sylvia, thank you very much.

POGGIOLI: Thank you, Renee.

MONTAGNE: This is NPR News.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by an NPR contractor. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.

Sylvia Poggioli is senior European correspondent for NPR's International Desk covering political, economic, and cultural news in Italy, the Vatican, Western Europe, and the Balkans. Poggioli's on-air reporting and analysis have encompassed the fall of communism in Eastern Europe, the turbulent civil war in the former Yugoslavia, and how immigration has transformed European societies.
Renee Montagne, one of the best-known names in public radio, is a special correspondent and host for NPR News.
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