Country Report on Terrorism 2019 - Chapter 5 - Revolutionary Struggle (RS)

Aka Epanastatikos Aghonas

Description:  Designated as an FTO on May 18, 2009, Revolutionary Struggle (RS) is a radical Marxist extremist group that has conducted attacks against both Greek and U.S. targets in Greece.  RS emerged in 2003 following the arrests of members of two other Greek Marxist groups, 17 November and Revolutionary People’s Struggle.

Activities:  RS first gained notoriety when it claimed responsibility for the September 5, 2003, bombings at the Athens Courthouse during the trials of 17 November members.  From 2004 to 2006, RS carried out IED attacks that included a March 2004 attack outside a Citibank office in Athens.  RS claimed responsibility for the January 2007 rocket-propelled grenade attack on the U.S. Embassy in Athens, which damaged the building, and the March 2009 bombing of a Citibank branch in Athens.

The Greek government has made significant strides in curtailing the group’s terrorist activity.  On April 10, 2010, Greek police arrested six suspected RS members, including purported leader Nikos Maziotis, who later escaped.  On April 3, 2013, five RS members were convicted by an Athens appeals court, three of them receiving maximum prison sentences.  Maziotis and another accused RS conspirator, Paula Roupa, were convicted in absentia.  Before Maziotis’s recapture, RS conducted a bomb attack outside a Bank of Greece office in Athens in April 2014; the blast caused extensive damage to surrounding structures but no casualties.

In March 2016, a Greek court sentenced Maziotis to life in prison plus 129 years.  In January 2017, Roupa was arrested by Greek police in Athens, later sentenced to life and 25 years’ imprisonment.  RS did not claim responsibility for any attacks in 2019.

Strength:  Precise numbers are unknown.

Location/Area of Operation:  Greece

Funding and External Aid:  RS’s sources of funding are unknown, but the group most likely supports itself by means of criminal activities, including bank robbery.