The 24 victims of the 1973 Athens Polytechnic uprising
One was a 22-year-old Norwegian tourist to Greece who would never return home after she was shot in the chest. Another was a 5½ boy, shot in the head while crossing the road with his mother.
They are just two of the victims – their names generally forgotten – of the events surrounding the Athens Polytechnic Uprising of 17 November 1973, when the ruling junta sent in the tanks to crush a student revolt against their dictatorial rule.
According to the findings of research published in 2003 by the National Hellenic Research Foundation (EIA) named named 24 people as having been killed in and around the Polytechnic campus on November 16-18.
The historian who carried out the research, Dr Leonidas Kallivretakis, carefully crosschecked a number of existing lists and records, before arriving at his own list.
Given that Dr Kallivretatkis’ list is not, to my knowledge, available in English, I’ve translated it below have also produced a Google Map (further down) showing the location of each fatality.
As in previous years, there are those who will deny that anyone died during the Polytechnic uprising. Neonazi Golden Dawn have been quite vocal about this this year, but there are doubters and deniers within the ranks of other parties too, particularly New Democracy. Hopefully, this blog post will contribute in some way to combating these denials.
The names of the victims of state violence on and around 17 November 1973:
1. Spyros Kontomaris, son of Anastasis, aged 57, lawyer (former Centre Union MP for Corfu), resident of Agiou Meletiou St, Athens. At around 8.30–9pm on 16 November 1973, he was standing at the junction of Georgiou Stavrou and Stadiou streets, when police fired tear gas at protesters, resulting in him suffering a heart attack. Pronounced dead at arrival at a Red Cross first aid station.
2. Diomedes Komnenos, son of Ioannis, aged 17, student, resident of Lefkados 7, Athens. Between 9.30–9.45pm on 16 November 1973, while he was with other protesters at the intersection of Averof and Marni streets, he was fatally wounded in the heart from shots fired by public order ministry guards. Transferred to a Red Cross first aid station and from there, dead, to what is now the General State hospital.
3. Sokratis Michail, aged 57, insurance agent, resident of Peristeri, Athens. Between 9–10.30pm on 16 November 1973, while he was somewhere between Bouboulinas and Solonos streets, police fired tear gas at protesters, during which he suffered a blood clot in the left coronary artery. He was transferred to the Red Cross first aid station on Triti Septemvriou St, where he died.
4. Torill Margrethe Engeland, daughter of Per Reidar, aged 22, student, from Molde, Norway. At about 11.30pm on 16 November 1973, she was fatally wounded in the chest by a shot fired by public order ministry guards. [Another source says she was at the junction of Averof and Triti Septemvriou streets.] Taken by protesters to the Acropol hotel and later, after she had died, to a Social Insurance Foundation (IKA) first aid station. Originally, she was incorrectly listed by police as the “Egyptian Touril Teklet” and this mistake can still be found in some lists of the dead.
5. Vasilis Famellos, son of Panayiotis, aged 26, private-sector employee, from Pyrgos, Ileias prefecture, resident of Kasou 1, Kypseli, Athens. At about 11.30pm on 16 November 1973, he was fatally wounded in the head by shots fired by public order ministry guards. [Another source says he was at the junction of Averof and Triti Septemvriou streets.] Taken by protesters to a Red Cross first aid station and from there, dead, to what is now the General State hospital.
6. Yiorgos Samouris, son of Andreas, aged 22, student at the Panteion Univiersity, originally from Patras, resident of Plateia Kountouriotou 7, Koukaki. Shortly before midnight on 16 November 1973, while in the general area of the Polytechnic (Kallidromiou and Zosimadon streets), he was fatally wounded in the neck by police fire. Moved to the makeshift medical clinic in the Polytechnic, he later died. From there, his body was taken to an IKA first aid station. His surname was incorrectly listed by police as “Chamourlis”.
7. Dimitris Kyriakopoulos, son of Antonis, aged 35, builder, from Kalavryta, a resident of Peristeri, Attica. On the evening of 16 November 1973, while he was in the Polytechnic, he was hit with tear gas and then was beaten by police with truncheons, the result of which he died from an acute aortic rupture, three days later, on 19 November 1973, at a Red Cross first aid station.
8. Spyros Marinos, son of Dionysis, nicknamed Georgaras, aged 31, private-sector employee, from Exochora on Zakynthos. On the evening of 16 November 1973, he was in the area of Polytechnic, where he was beaten by police with truncheons and suffered traumatic brain injuries. Moved to Pentelis Hospital, where he died on 19 November 1973 after an acute stroke. He was buried in his hometown, where a service was held in his memory on 9 September 1974.
9. Nikos Markoulis, son of Petros, aged 24, worker, from Partheni in Thessaloniki, resident of Christomanou 67, Sepolia, Athens. In the early hours of 17 November 1973, while walking on Vathis Square, he was wounded in the abdomen by a burst of fire shot by a military patrol. Taken to what is now the General State hospital, he died there on 19 November 1973.
10. Katerina Argyropoulou, wife of Angelis, aged 76, a resident of Kennedy and Kalymnos streets, Agioi Anargyroi, Athens. At 10am on 17 November 1973, while in the yard of her house, she was wounded in the back by a bullet. Taken to the Pammakaristos clinic in Kato Patisia, where she remained for one month. Returning home, she died six months later, in May 1974, as a result of trauma.
11. Stelios Karayiorgis, son of Agamemnonos, aged 19, builder, resident of Miaouli 38, Neo Irakleio, Athens. At 10.15am on 17 November 1973, while he was with other protesters on Patision St, between the Aelao and Ealinis cinemas, he was wounded by a burst of machine-gun fire shot from an armoured vehicle. Taken to KAT hospital, he died 12 days later, on 30 November 1973.
12. Markos Karamanis, son of Dimitris, aged 23, an electrician from Piraeus, resident of Chiou 35, Egaleo. At about 10.30am on 17 November 1973, while he was standing on the flat roof of the building at Egyptou 1, he was fatally wounded in the head by a shot fired by military guards from the rooftop of the OTE building opposite. (The perpetrator was Lieutenant Ioannis Lymperis, 573rd infantry battalion). Taken to the Pantanassa clinic on Plateia Victoria, where he was pronounced dead.
13. Alexandros Spartidis, son of Stratis, aged 16, school pupil, from Piraeus, resident of Agias Lavras 80, Ano Patision, Athens. Around 10.30–11am on 17 November 1973, while walking at the intersection of Patision and Kotsika streets, he was fatally injured by a shot to the stomach from the military guards on the rooftop of the OTE building opposite. (The perpetrator was Lieutenant Ioannis Lymperis, 573rd infantry battalion.) Suffering a perforating injury, he was taken to KAT hospital, where his father found him dead.
14. Dimitris Papaioannou, aged 60, manger of the social insurance fund for flour industry employees, resident of Aristomenous 105, Athens. Around 11.30am on 17 November 1973, while at Omonia Square, he was caught up in tear gas fired by police. Taken to a Red Cross first aid station, which pronounced his death from a heart attack.
15. Yiorgos Yeritsdis, son of Alexandros, aged 47, tax office official, resident of Elpidos 29, Neo Irakleio, Athens. At noon on 17 November 1973, while driving his car at Nea Liosia (now Ilion), he was fatally wounded in the head by fire that came through the roof of the car. Taken to what is now the General State hospital, he died later on the same day.
16. Vasiliki Bekiari, daughter of Fotis, aged 17, a school pupil who also worked, from Ampelaki in Aitoloakarnania prefecture, resident of Metagenous 8, Neos Kosmos, Athens. At noon on 17 November 1973, while she was on the roof of her house, she was fatally wounded in the neck by gunfire. Taken to what is now the General State hospital, she was transferred to Evangelismos hospital, where she died the same day.
17. Dimitris Theodoras, son of Theofanis, aged 5½, resident of Anakreontos 2, Zografou, Athens. At 1pm on 17 November 1973, while crossing the street with his mother at the intersection of Tritis Orinis Taxiarxias St and Papagou Ave in Zografou, he was fatally wounded in the head by a shot fired from a military patrol (probably by Capt Spyridon Stathakis of the Tank and Cavalry Training Centre or ΚΕΤΘ, which was skirmishing on Agios Therapondos hill). Killed instantly, he was taken to the Children’s hospital, which confirmed his death.
18. Basri (Alexandros Vasilis) Karakas, aged 43, Afghan Turkic nationality, juggler, resident of Myron 10, Agios Panteleimonas, Athens. At 1pm on 17 November 1973, while walking with his 13-year-old son at the intersection of Heyden and Acharnon streets, he was fatally wounded in the abdomen by a shot fired from an armoured military vehicle. Taken directly to a morgue, where he was pronounced dead.
19. Alexandros Papathanasiou, son of Spyridon, aged 59, retired tax office official, from Kerasovo, Agrinio, Aitoloakarnania prefecture, resident of Naxou 116, Athens. At 1.30pm on 18 November 1973, while walking with his two young daughters at the intersection of Drosopoulou and Kythnou streets, opposite the 16th police station, he got caught up in gunfire fired from the station by police officers, and lost consciousness (syncope). Taken to a first aid station, he was pronounced dead.
20. Andreas Koumbos, son of Stergios, aged 63, tradesman, originally from Karditsa, resident of Amaliados 12, Kolonos, Athens. Between 11–12am on 18 November 1973, while walking at the intersection of Triti Septemvriou and Kapodistriou streets, he was injured in the pelvis by a shot fired from an armoured military vehicle. Taken to a Red Cross first aid station, he was transferred to what is how the General State hospital, before ending up at the KAT hospital, where he died on 30 January 1974.
21. Michail Myroyiannis, son of Dimitris, aged 20, electrician, from Mytilini, resident of Asimaki Fotila 8, Athens. At noon on 18 November 1973, while walking at the intersection of Patision and Stournari streets, he was fatally wounded in the head with a shot fired from a revolver by an army officer (the perpetrator was Colonel Nikolaos Dertilis, who remains in jail to this day after his conviction for murder). Taken in a comatose state to a Red Cross first aid station and, from there, to the General State hospital, where he died later on the same day.
22. Kyriakos Panteleakis, son of Dimitris, aged 44, lawyer, from Krokees, Lakonia, resident of Feron 5, Athens. Between noon and 12.30pm on 18 November 1973, while walking at the intersection of Patision and Gladstonos streets, he was fatally wounded by fire shot from passing tanks. Taken to what is now the General State hospital, where he died on 27 December 1973.
23. Stathis Koliniatis, aged 47, from Piraeus, resident of Nikopoleos 4, Kamatero, Athens. Suffered head injuries when beaten by police on 18 November 1973. Died as a result of his injuries on 21 November 1973.
24. Yiannis Mikronis, son of Angelos, aged 22, electrical engineering student at the University of Patras, from Ano Alisos in Achaia. Participated in occupation of his university. Beaten afterwards, in circumstances that remain unclear. Suffered a ruptured liver, from which he died on 17 December 1973 at the General People’s hospital. Some sources say that he suffered his injuries in Patras; others say Athens. The case remains open. In some lists, his name is given as Kostas Mikronis.
Map showing where each victim was shot, beaten or died of complications following tear gas inhalation
View Victims of the Athens Polytechnic uprising, 1973 in a larger map