Ex-Greek prime minister Papademos injured in vehicle blast

Greek police scrambled Friday to determine how a letter bomb wounded former PM Lucas Papademos despite security checks being beefed up after a wave of similar attacks in March. The former prime minister's auto was parked by the side of the road, in front of its escort vehicle.

The 69-year-old Papademos, who served as prime minister for six months in 2011-2012, was wounded in an explosion in a vehicle in central Athens on Thursday, May 25, 2017.

The group has also claimed responsibility for a spate of parcel bombings in 2010 targeting embassies in Athens and the offices of European leaders overseas. The economist, who led a provisional government between 2011 and 2012, was taken to hospital for emergency surgery.

Greece remains in recession with the highest jobless rate in Europe and a stalled creditor review has interrupted payouts under its worldwide bailout program, its third since 2010.

He was Greek central bank governor from 1994-2002 and vice-president of the European Central Bank from 2002 to 2010.

"We strongly condemn this heinous attack against Mr. Papademos", Turkey's Foreign Ministry said in a written statement.

FILE PHOTO: Greece's incoming Prime Minister Lucas Papademos is seen after a meeting with Greek political leaders outside the Presidential palace in Athens, Greece, November 10, 2011.

Papademos has been in retirement since stepping down as caretaker prime minister in May 2012.

"It was total panic", he said.

It is also reported that the explosion occurred when Papademos was opened in the vehicle document folder.

It was unclear where the suspect package was picked up.

A police officer secures the area around Papademos' auto in Athens. Meanwhile, days earlier an envelope containing bullets, addressed to Greece's general secretary for public revenue, was intercepted at a post office in Athens while another envelope exploded at an International Monetary Fund office in Paris, injuring one person in late March. Most of the devices were intercepted or destroyed by police, but one device injured a parcel company employee in Greece.

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