Dimitris Koufodinas, a senior figure of November 17, a far-left group involved in the murder of Turkish diplomats, was granted a two-day leave from prison where he is serving multiple life sentences.
The parole board's decision, effective yesterday, angered victims of the group that terrorized Greece from the 1970s to the early 2000s.
Koufodinas and five other senior figures of the terrorist group were handed multiple life sentences in 2003 for murders and bombings during 27 years of violence.
His group is responsible for the murder of Çetin Görgü, a press attache at the Turkish Embassy in Athens in 1991, the 1994 killing of Counsellor Ömer Haluk Sipahioğlu stationed at the embassy and a bombing in 1991 that wounded Deniz Bölükbaşı, another Turkish Embassy employee.
November 17's other targets include a CIA station chief and a British Embassy defense attache.
Prison authorities granted his request for temporary leave from prison on condition he report to a police station twice a day. It is his first such leave since he was imprisoned in 2003.
The release comes at a sensitive time for the government, frequently accused by opposition parties of being soft on crime, and particularly anti-establishment groups with roots in leftist radicalism and anarchism.
The Greek government has not commented on the issue.
Conservative lawmaker Dora Bakoyannis, whose husband Pavlos Bakoyannis was gunned down by November 17 in 1989, was visibly angry during a live broadcast after he left prison on leave.
"He isn't just any terrorist. He was a leader, the ideological guide, the guy who wrote a book who said that after the murder he went to a tavern and celebrated while my children were crying," she told Skai TV.
Dimitris Papadimoulis, a member of the ruling Syriza party and European lawmaker, said a law allowing prisoners home leave was introduced by conservatives, but expressed some misgivings over the timing of the convict's leave.
Koufodinas, an amateur beekeeper known as "poison hand" for the precision of his aim, has been kept at a high-security prison in Athens for the last 15 years. There, he wrote two books, "I was born on November 17" and "13 Answers."
In a high profile trial in 2003, 15 people, including Koufodinas, were found guilty for the 23 killings and dozens of bombings claimed by the guerrilla group.
In 2013, Christodoulos Xiros, another convicted member of the group, fled while on prison leave. Unremorseful, he called for a revolution against the state while on the run. He was re-arrested in 2014, after Greece offered a 1 million euro bounty for him.
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