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GreekReporter.comGreek NewsRelatives of Rail Tragedy Victims Mourn Their Dead at Tempe

Relatives of Rail Tragedy Victims Mourn Their Dead at Tempe

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Relatives of the 57 victims lay flowers at Tempe. File photo. Credit: AMNA

A memorial service was held on Wednesday at the site of the rail tragedy in Tempe in Central Greece to honor the 57 individuals who lost their lives on February 28, 2023.

Relatives and friends gathered to pay their respects, leaving flowers at the scene as they called for justice.

“Justice will come as soon as those responsible are sent to prison,” the father of Panos Routsi, who lost his life in the train accident said. He blamed the authorities for covering up the evidence following the train collision.

The investigation is ongoing amidst bitterness and suspicion on the part of the families affected. The tears of those who lost their loved ones have dried, but the anger remains, still palpable. It has been one year, and not one official has taken responsibility for the accident. Not one apology has been uttered by official lips, whether it was from the State or Hellenic Train.

Churches ring their bells for the victims of the rail tragedy

Churches across the country rang their bells 57 times to symbolize the number of lives lost, many of whom were young students returning home after a long weekend.

This gesture was made in response to a request from Maria Karystianou, representing the families of the victims, to the Holy Archdiocese of Athens and the Holy Metropolises of the Church of Greece.

Additionally, a monument dedicated to the memory of the victims was unveiled in the city of Larissa.

Meanwhile, in the Parliament in Athens, lawmakers observed a moment of silence in honor of the victims.

Protests in Athens

Outside, protesters, including rail and hospital workers, seafarers, and school teachers, joined a 24-hour walkout organized by the country’s largest public-sector union, ADEDY, to commemorate the anniversary of the train crash.

Railway workers demand those responsible for the accident be brought to justice. “Railway workers are the only ones who are not to blame for all that happened as they have been calling for the improvement in safety for years because they saw what was coming,” a statement by the Railway Workers Union said.

A protest in Athens turned violent as clashes broke out between anarchist groups and the police, which used tear gas to disperse the protestors who threw petrol bombs toward the Parliament building.

Earlier, parents and friends used red paint to write the names of the victims in front of the Parliament.

Greek PM Kyriakos Mitsotakis promised that those found guilty of the Tempe train tragedy will be punished in a video message on Wednesday to mark the first anniversary of the accident.

Related: Greek Railway Disaster Expert Speaks of Crucial Omissions in Tempe Probe

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