A cleric threw a bottle of sulfuric acid at several Greek metropolitans today at the synod palace at the Petraki monastery in central Athens, Romfea agency reported. He is a hieromonk, a clergyman of the Veria diocese, who was accused before the church court. According to preliminary information, he was to be convicted.
The motives of the hieromonk are still unknown. Sulfuric acid was thrown on the hands and faces of the metropolitans of Kifisia Cyril, Arta Kalinik, Cassandria Nicodemus, Konitsa Andrei, Gumenitsa Dimitri, Zakynt Dionysius and Glyfada Antony. Four of them have burns and are hospitalized. Two clergymen from the church court, who are also in hospital, were also injured.
The Archbishop of Athens Jerome visited the victims, who are accommodated in two hospitals – “Laiko” and “KAT”. He said he was shocked and that such a thing had never happened before. The President of the country, Mrs. Katerina Sakelaropoulou, also spoke with the injured metropolitans.
Archbishop. Jerome said that the attack took place during the meeting, when the clergyman in despair or anger resorted to this action, for which he was prepared in advance. The archbishop thanked the doctors for the very quick reaction, which allowed “to avoid even worse developments.”
Laiko Hospital said one unnamed metropolitan had been transferred to plastic surgery and was in critical condition, and two others were in ophthalmology.
According to unofficial information, the metropolitans of Kifisia and Konitsa have burns in the eye area, and those of Gumenitsa and Zakynthos – around the ears; one of the other two clerics has neck wounds.