Here in Athens’s Syntagma Square, just after breakfast time one weekday morning, pensioner Dimitris Christoulas put a handgun to his head and pulled the trigger.
The retired pharmacist had walked out of his flat in a middle-class suburb for the last time. He locked the heavy shutters behind him, and the door where he had hung a sign saying: ‘Can’t Pay, Won’t Pay’.
In his jacket he carried a note saying his pension had been cut to ribbons and he couldn’t face a future of ‘raiding rubbish bins for food’.
His only child, Emi, had met her 77-year-old father for coffee the previous evening, though he gave no hint that he was planning to kill himself.
‘Things have got worse for us Greeks since my father died four years ago,’ she says today.
‘Pensioners are in terrible poverty. Suicides have doubled to 3,000 a year. Almost one in three people have no work.