Greek court releases suspected militant on hunger strike

A Greek court on Thursday released a suspected member of a far-left militant group who had gone on hunger strike to protest his more than two-year detention without trial.

The court ruled that 29-year-old Costas Sakkas can be released on bail of 30,000 euros ($38,000) but he is barred from leaving the greater Athens area and must report to his local police station every week.

He is also forbidden to come into contact with his co-defendants.

A self-styled anarchist, Sakkas had been placed in pre-trial detention in December 2010 alongside several members of the extremist group Conspiracy of Fire Nuclei who were later convicted of bombings. He denies involvement in the group, listed as a terrorist organisation by Washington.

Sakkas began a hunger strike in early June when a 30-month period legally enabling authorities to keep him behind bars without trial expired.

His doctor earlier this week warned that Sakkas had lost 20 percent of his body weight and risked "irreversible" damage to his eyesight, heart, kidneys and liver.

Amnesty International had also expressed concern about his detention and the main opposition party Syriza had organised protest rallies demanding his immediate release.

Conspiracy of Fire Nuclei sent parcel bombs to European leaders and embassies and carried out a wave of arson and bomb attacks until 2011, when police carried out several arrests and said they had dismantled the group.

There have since been sporadic arson hits against government targets in support of jailed Conspiracy members, many of them carried out in the name of an Italian-based outfit, the Informal Anarchist Federation (FAI).