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Saturday, November 20, 1999 Published at 04:50 GMT


World: Europe

Athens riots for Clinton visit


Thousands of anti-American protestors in the Greek capital, Athens, have clashed with riot police as President Clinton arrived for a short visit.

Demonstrators set fire to shops, offices and banks, and fought running battles against police, who responded with rounds of teargas.

A number of people were injured.

The protests were linked to Greek anger at the NATO bombing campaign against Serbia; they were the biggest for many years in Athens, and among the worst during a foreign trip by Mr Clinton.

At a banquet given by the Greek President, Constantinos Stephanopoulos, Mr Clinton said both countries had fought hard to guarantee their people the right to passionate debate. The authorities completely sealed off the area of Athens where Mr Clinton is staying.

In his talks with Greek leaders, he is promoting American business, and better relations between Greece and Turkey.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service



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