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Athens - Gas canisters exploded in three separate attacks at the offices of Greece's deputy agriculture minister and two other ruling party lawmakers in the city of Thessaloniki on Tuesday, causing damage but no injuries, police said.
Greece has seen a rise in attacks against politicians and businesses in recent years as it struggles through recession - now in its sixth year - which has sent unemployment to record highs and eroded living standards.
In the three attacks just after 8pm, three gas canisters exploded outside the office of Deputy Agriculture Minister Stavros Kalafatis, three outside the office of New Democracy lawmaker Kostas Gioulekas and another three outside lawmaker Yorgos Orfanos' office.
Six people were evacuated by firefighters from the smoke-filled buildings but no one was injured in the blasts, police said.
“The government will not be discouraged by acts of terrorism,” said government spokesperson Simos Kedikoglou.
In January, gunmen fired shots at an Athens office of Prime Minister Antonis Samaras. There were no injuries and no claim of responsibility.
Greek officials are in talks with inspectors from the “troika” of European Union and International Monetary Fund lenders who are in Athens to assess progress before disbursing the latest aid tranche this month.
The troika is demanding Greece push through an ambitious reform programme - including a deeply unpopular scheme to reduce its bloated public sector - to turn around an economy that has shrunk by 20 percent since 2008. - Reuters