Far-left militants claim Athens bomb blast

Athens (AFP) - A far-left militant group claimed responsibility Thursday for a small bomb that exploded in the heart of Athens, saying it had targeted the home of a "vindictive" prosecutor.

Greek police said earlier they believed a right-wing bookshop on the ground floor of the the prosecutor's apartment building, outside of which the bomb went off on Wednesday night, was the target.

The blast, caused by a small explosive device that caused minor damage, came after a phone call was placed to a left-wing newspaper warning of the imminent attack, leading police to cordon off the area.

In a statement posted on the alternative Indymedia website, Conspiracy of Fire Nuclei, some of whose members have been convicted of bombings, said it had targeted Georgia Tsatani as a "symbolic act."

Tsatani works as a prosecuting magistrate in the Athens court of appeal.

The group accused Tsatani, a controversial figure in Greece, of having buried legal cases implicating right-wing politicians and of opposing the release from jail of a partner of one of the group's members.

"Magistrates' vindictive tendencies against our comrades' families is a choice for which they will pay heavily," it warned.

In the past 10 years, hundreds of arson and bomb attacks in Greece have hit financial, diplomatic and political targets, with police blaming extremist groups.

Such attacks have grown rarer in recent years, however, with several fringe groups now dismantled.

Conspiracy of Fire Nuclei, listed as a terrorist organisation by the United States, was very active in the first decade of this century, when it sent parcel bombs to European leaders and embassies and carried out a wave of arson and bomb attacks.

Police in 2011 carried out several arrests and said they had dismantled the group.

However, there have since been sporadic arson hits against government targets in support of jailed Conspiracy members, many of them carried out in the name of an Italian-based outfit, the Informal Anarchist Federation (FAI).

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