Revolutionary Nuclei

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Revolutionary Nuclei
Dates of operation 1996-2000
Motives anti-imperialist, anti-globalization
Active region(s) Greece Greece
Ideology Anarchism (?)
Notable attacks 15 bombings
Status Inactive
Size Unknown

Revolutionary Nuclei (RN, Greek: Επαναστατικοί Πυρήνες; Epanastatiki Pyrines), also known as Revolutionary Cells,[1] is a far-left terrorist group in Greece. RN first appeared with a bomb attack on a Hellenic Coast Guard facility in Piraeus on 11 May 1997. In a proclamation sent to Eleftherotypia newspaper but never published, the group denounced workplace accidents in the Piraeus port ship construction zone and pledged to "strike without mercy the people responsible for those deaths" and that of anarchist Christoforos Marinos (found dead in his cabin aboard the ferryboat Pegasus, an apparent suicide, as port police closed in to arrest him on 23 July 1996).

In three subsequent proclamations published in Athens newspaper Athinaiki (24 November 1997, 28 April 1999, 7 March 2000),[2] RN said its members had also been responsible for bombing a Coast Guard fuel facility on 28 October 1996 and, using the name "Liberation Struggle" (Apeleftherotikos Agonas), for a failed bombing of an Athens courthouse on 27 January 1997.

The other attacks for which RN took credit:

  • 19 August 1997, bomb against the office of former Minister of Public Order Stelios Papathemelis
  • 24 November 1997, bomb against the Panethniki Enosi of former Chief Justice Vasilis Kokkinos
  • 29 June 1998, bomb against the civil service hiring organization ASEP
  • 29 December 1998, bombs against American Express and Barclays Bank branches
  • 27 April 1999, bomb against the Intercontinental Hotel kills a Greek woman working at a conference
  • 19 December 1999, bomb against Texaco offices
  • 28 February 2000, bomb against METKA construction company offices
  • 5 March 2000, bomb against AKTOR construction company offices
  • 14 October 2000, bomb is defused at the office of Panhellenic Socialist Movement MP Stavros Soumakis
  • 13 November 2000, bomb damages workshop of Theodoros Papagiannis (sculptor of a statue of George Marshall)
  • 13 November 2000, bombs damage Citibank and Barclays branches.

RN's time bombs were small. To avoid casualties, a prior warning was called into a newspaper. However, the April 1999 bomb placed outside the Athenaeum Intercontinental, aimed at a globalization conference sponsored by The Economist group, killed a company employee because police and hotel staff failed to coordinate the timely evacuation of the building despite two warning calls.

The drafter of RN's convoluted proclamations did not specify a clear ideology for the group, though RN's support for Christoforos Marinos implies its operational members were probably anarchists. In general, the proclamations are anti-imperialist and anti-NATO but also anti-nationalist, criticizing the "neo-Byzantine" attitudes of Papathemelis and Kokkinos.

The group is estimated to have had very few members. RN did not claim credit for any attack after November 2000. In 2009, the U.S. State Department formally dropped RN from the list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations under section 219 of the US Immigration and Nationality Act.

Greek authorities speculate that Revolutionary Nuclei may have been formed by members of the Revolutionary Popular Struggle (Greek: Επαναστατικός Λαϊκός Αγώνας; Epanastatikos Laikos Agonas) after that group dissolved in 1995. The language of the proclamations is not similar, and no evidence of a connection has been made public.


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