Greece has suspended all national league and local cup tournaments after an arson attack on refereeing chief Giorgos Bikas.
The Hellenic Football Federation (EPO) made the announcement on Wednesday following the arson attack early on Wednesday in Halkidiki, northern Greece.
Bikas is reportedly safe and his family as they were away from the burnt property.
“Following an extraordinary meeting, the EPO announces its decision for the suspension of all national football championships until the conclusion of the investigation into the causes of the fire by the fire services.
“The EPO expresses its full compassion to Mr Giorgos Bikas, whom we will support in every way possible,” the EPO said in a statement following the incident.
The incident comes after Giorgos Tsachilidis was threatened by two men leading to the resignation of all three members that constituted the refereeing committee (KED). The football season was moved forward by two weeks following dispute between the Greek government, the EPO, and top Greek clubs.
Top clubs of the country have come out to condemn the attacks, calling on government to braing those responsible for the acts to justice. Greek champions Olympiakos in a statement said:
“Olympiakos suffers more damage than most from this latest criminal and disgraceful act.”
PAOK Salonica, in a similar statement, said: “There must be no surrender to this mafia – only a strong and united front against these criminals from all of us. It is shocking organized crime in football not only remains in place, but is now putting human lives at risk.”
The game between Greece and Bosnia-Herzegovina on November 13 still stands, as the ban does not affect it. Greek teams in the Europa League would continue with their scheduled games as well as they are not affected by the ban.