Three-day events commemorating the 37th anniversary of the November 17, 1973 Polytechnic student's uprising that led to the collapse of the 7-year military dictatorship in Greece culminated on Wednesday, with officials and the public laying wreaths and placing flowers at the Polytechnic monument.
Prime minister George Papandreou placed three red carnations on the Polytechnic monument at noon, while Coalition of the Left, Movements and Ecology (SYN) leader Alexis Tsipras also paid tribute at the monument at noon.
Earlier, parliament president Philippos Petsalnikos, heading an all-party parliamentary delegation, laid a wreath at the monument.
The gates of the Polytechnic, which opened to the public on Monday at the commencement of the memorial events, closed at 1:00, as people gathered for the annual march through the streets of Athens that ended in front of the US Embassy.
Polytechnic march in Athens comes to an end
The traditonal march marking the anniversary of the Poly-technic uprising came to an end in Athens on Wednesday evening and almost all the streets have been opened to traffic.
The only location remaining closed is in front of the Athens Polytechnic in Patission avenue in downtown Athens.
Incidents broke out with protesters shortly before the end of the march in Athens, while tension also prevailed in the port city of Patra when anti-establishment individuals stoned police, resulting in riot police following using teargas.
PM's message on Nov. 17 Polytechnic anniversary
Prime Minister George Papandreou on Wednesday called on young people to take into their own hands the "revolution for the self-evident" and the major reforms that need to be implemented.
In a message marking the 37th anniversary of the November 17 Polytechnic students' uprising in 1973, the premier underlined that “our generation had struggled for liberation from an importee junta, for bread, education and freedom” and now “we are being called to transform our freedom into creative initiative, imagination and innovation. To change the economy in order to be viable, green, competitive; to change education to provide us with the means that will allow us to stand on our own feet, to break loose from dependencies and supervisions.”
He called on the young people to take into their own hands the changes that need to be made in their neighborhoods, in the new municipalities, the university schools, green development, the creation of a state of law, of transparency in transactions, of meritocracy and justice “and united to create the country we deserve”.
Parliament observes minute's silence for November 17 anniversary
The Greek Parliament on Wednesday a minute's silence to mark the 37th anniversary of the November 17 student uprising of 1973, following speeches by representatives of the political parties.
The annual debate was begun by Parliament President Philippos Petsalnikos, who said Parliament paid homage to the young people that had dared to resist the junta of the colonels, which was toppled by popular outcry some six months after the events at the Polytechnic and the regime's harsh crackdown on the student protests.
There followed speeches by ruling PASOK Parliamentary spokesman Christos Protopappas, main opposition New Democracy's Costas Tzavaras, Communist Party of Greece (KKE) spokesman Spyros Halvatzis, Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS) MP Asterios Rondoulis, Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) MP Panagiotis Lafazanis and Democratic Left MP Thanassis Leventis.
The Parliament was next addressed by Education, Lifelong Learning and Religions Minister Anna Diamantopoulou.