Greek labour ministry accused of covering up death of Egyptian worker

AFP, Tuesday 28 Dec 2010

Reports accuse the Greek labor ministry of covering up the death of an Egyptian worker in Athens

Greece's labour ministry came under fire on Tuesday for allegedly covering up the death of an Egyptian window cleaner in a fatal fall from one of its buildings over a week ago.

Greek newspapers said the ministry was keeping mum on the death of Asiz Emad who died on December 19 after losing his balance and falling from the third floor of the ministry's central offices in Athens.

"The labour ministry has blood on its windows," charged left-wing Avgi daily.

The greater Athens union of cleaners (Pekop) has accused the ministry of trying to cover up Emad's death and demanded to know why the father of four was working on a Sunday in violation of his contract.

A protest is to be held outside the ministry on Wednesday.

The ministry could not be reached for comment.

A spokesman for the state labour inspectorate told Kathimerini daily that legal action has been initiated against the cleaning contractor.

In a break with usual practice, no announcement was made on Emad's death because the competent employee was on vacation, the inspectorate said.

Over 60 people have been officially recorded as work-related casualties in Greece this year, Communist daily Rizospastis said.

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