Four injured in Athens shootout

Last updated 01:00 17/07/2014

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Greek police arrested one of the country's most wanted men - a fugitive convicted of terrorism - during a shootout in Athens' central tourist district that left four people wounded, authorities said.

It was not immediately clear how the lunchtime shootout began in the crowded Monastiraki district, near the city's main Syntagma Square and historic Plaka district.

Police said the wounded included Nikos Maziotis, who has been on the run along with his wife Panagiota Roupa since 2012 following their release from jail after serving the maximum 18 months in pre-trial detention.

Maziotis was being treated in a central Athens hospital under heavy police guard.

Maziotis and Roupa were convicted in absentia last year and sentenced to 25 years for participation in Revolutionary Struggle, a group active between 2003 and 2009 and best known for firing a rocket-propelled grenade into the US Embassy and bombing the Athens Stock Exchange.

Neither of those attacks caused injuries.

In January, authorities announced a reward for information leading to each of the couple's arrest.

Police said the others wounded were a police officer and two bystanders, both foreign tourists.

Witnesses at the scene said an Australian tourist was lightly wounded in the leg.  

''The whole thing lasted about half an hour. We saw a lot of police running through the streets and later we heard the shots,'' souvenir store employee Makis Tourounias said.  

''There wasn't much panic. Store owners and police were telling people to come indoors. But not everyone realised what was going on.''

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- AP

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