2008 Greek riots
On the night of Saturday, December 6th, two Special Guards of the Greek police clashed with a small group of young men. The exact details of what took place are still unclear, but it is known that one of the Guards fired three shots, and one of those bullets caused the death of 15-year-old Alexander Grigoropoulos (Greek: Αλέξανδρος Γρηγορόπουλος) - whether the injury was made by an accidental ricochet or deliberate shot remains to be determined. The two Guards are now in jail awaiting trial, the shooter charged with homicide. This incident sparked an immediate and widespread response in the form of angry demonstrations and riots in many Greek cities that have continued at varying levels to this day - though dimming in intensity recently. Alexander's death appears to have been a catalyst, unleashing widespread Greek anger towards many issues - police mistreatment of protesters, unwelcome education reforms, economic stagnation, government corruption and more.
The death of Grigoropoulos resulted in large demonstrations, which escalated to widespread rioting, with hundreds of rioters damaging property and engaging riot police with Molotov cocktails, stones and other objects. Demonstrations and rioting soon spread to several other cities, including Thessaloniki, the country's second-largest city. Outside Greece, solidarity demonstrations, riots and, in some cases, clashes with local police also took place in a number of European cities including Istanbul, London, Paris, Rome, Berlin, Frankfurt, Madrid, Barcelona, Amsterdam, The Hague, Copenhagen, Bordeaux, Seville as well as Nicosia, the capital of Cyprus, and the western Cypriot city of Paphos. Newspaper Kathimerini called the rioting "the worst Greece has seen since the restoration of democracy in 1974".