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Greek protests disrupt Christmas celebrations

Christmas revellers in Athens fled as riot police clashed with protesters in the latest violence over the fatal police shooting of a Greek teenager.

Christmas revellers in Athens fled as riot police clashed with protesters in the latest violence over the fatal police shooting of a Greek teenager.

The clashes came as thousands of students and protesters marched in a rally, chanting "We are the law, we'll stay on the streets."

But around 200 protesters broke away from the rally and began throwing rocks and firebombs at police and buildings near parliament, the Associated Press reported.

They overturned a car, set fire to trash bins and splashed police with red paint. Police responded with tear gas and flash grenades.

Parents and children were forced to leave a Christmas carousel in Syntagma Square.

Protesters also tried to burn down Athen’s main Christmas tree, which had just been replaced after the original was torched during riots.

Earlier in the day, some 1,000 demonstrators joined a peaceful Communist party-backed march through the city. Some 300 people also marched in Greece's second-largest city of Thessaloniki.

Despite the attacks, the rioting has subsided since the violent protests were sparked by the Dec. 6 police killing of 15-year-old Alexandros Grigoropoulos.

More than 300 people have been detained or arrested as masked and hooded youths have marched through the cities, smashing, torching or looting buildings and battling with riot police.

With files from the Associated Press

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