Clashes at Armenian protest in Greece

Police in Thessaloniki use pepper spray to disperse 250 protesters gathered outside the Turkish consulate to commemorate the Armenian genocide.

Tensions broke out between police and protesters in Thessaloniki on Wednesday at the annual commemoration of the Armenian genocide in Ottoman Turkey nearly a century ago.

Police used pepper spray to disperse the 250 protesters, mostly from Greek-Armenian groups, who had gathered outside the Turkish consulate in the northern city of Thessaloniki, AP reports.

The incident occurred when a number of protesters challenged a riot police cordon, demanding permission to hand a protest petition to consulate staff.

About 20 countries worldwide including Greece, as well as the European Parliament, recognise the mass killings as an act of genocide, despite strong objections from Turkey. Some 1.5 million Armenians were killed by Ottoman Turks around World War I.

Thousands of people gathered in Yerevan, Armenia, on Tuesday and Wednesday to commemorate the 98th anniversary of the Armenian genocide.

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