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A.N.A. Bulletin, 13/08/96

From: "Greek Press & Information Office, Ottawa Canada" <>

Athens News Agency Directory

ATHENS NEWS AGENCY BULLETIN (No 962), August 13, 1996

Greek Press & Information Office

Ottawa, Canada

E-Mail Address:


  • [1] Nicosia speaks of Turkish terrorist groups involved in anti-occupation rally incident

  • [2] Turkish Cypriot press confirms 'Gray Wolves' presence in incidents

  • [3] Greek parties intensify protest

  • [4] Opposition criticism

  • [5] Reppas

  • [6] Other reactions

  • [7] Protest rally

  • [8] Isaac's funeral to be held today

  • [9] Turkish soldiers abduct two young men

  • [10] Greek reaction

  • [11] US decries Cyprus violence, urges peace talks

  • [12] UN angry over bloody incidents

  • [13] Bikers' run bigger than European borders

  • [14] European reactions

  • [15] 2 Turkish illegal immigrant smugglers imprisoned

  • [16] Greek navy ship due in Limassol today

  • [17] Municipal cultural companies to receive boost

  • [18] Juntist Papadopoulos hospitalized

  • [19] Greece accuses FYROM of creating 'negative climate'

  • [20] Frckovski says FYROM has 'learnt to live with Greek pressures'

  • [21] Olympic medals place Greece in third position in EU rankings according to population

  • [22] Planned tour of Mt. Athos by Prince Charles canceled

  • [23] Pangalos to visit Iran

  • [24] Constantopoulos calls for clear Gov't stance on early elections

  • [1] Nicosia speaks of Turkish terrorist groups involved in anti-occupation rally incident

    Nicosia, 13/08/1996 (ANA/CNA)

    The government has information that terrorist groups were brought to Cyprus to stir trouble during Sunday's anti-occupation rally by Cypriot and European bikers, Foreign Minister Alecos Michaelides said yesterday. The minister also expressed the view that UN peacekeepers could have tried to pull to safety a Greek Cypriot, savagely beaten to death by Turkish extremists in the UN-controlled buffer zone.

    Tassos Isaac, 24, died in hospital of injuries after being beaten by Turks at Dherynia in the buffer zone dividing the Republic of Cyprus since Turkish forces invaded and occupied the northern part of the island in 1974.

    The dead man and 41 other demonstrators who were injured on Sunday were part of a group of motorcyclists from Cyprus and other European countries who arrived on the island on Saturday after riding from Berlin in a peaceful protest against the continued division of the island.

    Isaac and most of the others wounded were trapped in barbed wire and then savagely beaten by Turkish settlers and Turkish Cypriots using sticks and iron bars, while soldiers from the UN forces (UNFICYP) looked on.

    It would have only been human for the peacekeepers to have tried to pull the Greek Cypriot to safety, Mr. Michaelides told the press after successive meetings here yesterday with UN resident representative Gustave Feissel and the ambassadors of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council.

    "For the first time, a terrorist group was brought to Cyprus and I told the ambassadors I met today that their arrival here should be condemned," he said.

    If it is not, he added, this could imply that they may return to Cyprus some other time, not necessarily during protest rallies but also on other occasions.

    "We expect that everybody will respond accordingly," he said.

    Asked if the government had firm information that members of the Turkish terrorist organization the "Gray Wolves" were actually in Cyprus, the minister urged the big five and the UN to "investigate who arrived in Cyprus and who did not."

    "We have received information from various sources that a group of Gray Wolves were brought to Cyprus, at the request of Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash and with the consent of the Turkish government. If they did not come, let them tell us about it," Mr. Michaelides added.

    He also revealed the government was informed about Turkish plans to put Turkish Cypriots in the vanguard and mingle with them members of the "Gray Wolves", who had taken positions on the ground and were ready to attack demonstrators.

    The minister said he expressed the government's "grave concern" about Sunday's incidents and told Mr. Feissel and the five ambassadors that the murder of Tassos Isaac on Sunday "was no ordinary death during a protest rally but a horrific murder, witnessed on film which shows some people beating this young man to death."

    The footage we have, Mr. Michaelides said, will be sent to the UN to provide them with the necessary evidence.

    He described the person who beat Isaac to death as a "criminal" and said Cyprus police officers and UN peacekeepers went to the scene of the crime yesterday to examine the area and collect evidence.

    Asked to comment on the lukewarm position adopted by the UN men, Mr. Michaelides said "it was disturbing to see somebody being murdered and next to him some other people not lifting a finger to help.

    "I am not saying the UN men could have stopped the beating but I believe, as human beings, they should have made an effort," he said.

    The minister acknowledged that UNFICYP's limited number restricts its ability to "deal with large challenges" and said the force is facing other problems too.

    But, he also pointed out that "the apathy displayed by some people" is in question and not whether the UN are in a position to tackle such incidents.

    Asked what his interlocutors said, Mr. Michaelides said "everybody took an interest in the events, all expressed sadness at the loss of life and they all stressed that Sunday's events should stress the need for increased effort towards a Cyprus settlement."

    Replying to questions, the minister said nobody can claim that the presence of an estimated 7,000 bikers would have created less problems, if Sunday's anti-occupation ride was not canceled.

    Some of the motorcyclists had pushed ahead into the buffer zone despite a joint decision and a common appeal by Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides and the motorcyclists federation's leadership to cancel the last part of the rally and not to proceed into the buffer zone.

    [2] Turkish Cypriot press confirms 'Gray Wolves' presence in incidents

    Nicosia, 13/08/1996 (ANA - G. Leonidas)

    Turkish Cypriot newspapers have confirmed the participation of members of the "Gray Wolves" Turkish terrorist organization in Sunday's attacks against Greek Cypriot demonstrators.

    The 'Yeni Duzen' daily said that while reporters were not allowed into the area of the incidents, members of the "Gray Wolves" were free to fire at Greek Cypriots with hunting rifles.

    The 'Ortam' daily also spoke of the involvement of the "Gray Wolves" in the incidents, and noted that Tassos Isaac was fatally wounded after being beaten with stones and clubs.

    [3] Greek parties intensify protest

    Athens, 13/08/1996 (ANA)

    Outrage at the murder of a peaceful protester on Cyprus's green line on Sunday continued to be heard yesterday.

    Coalition of the Left and Progress party Eurodeputy Alekos Alavanos has requested the intervention of the EU Council of Ministers to demand explanations from Ankara concerning the stance of the Turkish occupation forces on Cyprus following the death of the Greek Cypriot demonstrator.

    In a question submitted to the Council, Mr. Alavanos demands that those responsible for the murder of Tassos Isaac, 24, be punished "in exemplary manner".

    Mr. Alavanos also asked the EU foreign ministers to support the demands of the demonstrating motorcyclists for free movement throughout Cyprus.

    PASOK Eurodeputy Yiannos Kranidiotis, who was in Cyprus and witnessed the incidents, said in an article in the Athens daily 'Ta Nea' yesterday that "the symbolic value of the motorcyclists' rally, which started off from Berlin to end in the occupied are as of Cyprus, proved that throughout Europe, freedom of communication and movement is being respected, while in Cyprus, human rights are systematically violated by the (Turkish) occupation forces."

    "Cyprus is the last divided country of Europe. The message of this rally was sent to the international community in the most tragic way. But the incidents occurred before UN apathy," Mr. Kranidiotis added.

    [4] Opposition criticism

    Athens, 13/08/1996 (ANA)

    The main opposition New Democracy (ND) party meanwhile criticized the government's handling of Greek-Turkish relations.

    Party spokesman Prokopis Pavlopoulos said "the recent dramatic events confirm that Turkey, within the framework of its long-term expansionist policy, is dangerously escalating its provocations, not only against our country but against Hellenism as a who le, as evidenced by the latest Turkish acts of barbarity in Cyprus and the unacceptable acts of the Turkish government's hecklers in Istanbul".

    "Unfortunately," Mr. Pavlopoulos continued, "the stance of the prime minister (Costas Simitis) and the government, and particularly the leadership of the foreign ministry, is not up to the occasion. It is characteristic that there was no immediate react ion to the competent international fora and the European Union."

    Mr. Pavlopoulos accused the government of not having a foreign policy and lacking political will when it came to defending Greece's national interests and rights.

    ND president Miltiades Evert spoke with Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides by phone yesterday morning.

    Reports said Mr. Evert expressed his undivided support for the struggle of the Cypriot people.

    The funeral of Isaac, scheduled to be held today in Nicosia, is to be attended by Finance Under-secretary George Drys, representing the Greek government, while ND representatives Aristotelis Pavlidis and Mr. Pavlopoulos are also to attend.

    [5] Reppas

    Athens, 13/08/1996 (ANA)

    Government spokesman Dimitris Reppas replied to the criticism from the main opposition party saying that New Democracy "should stop using national issues merely in order to put out announcements".

    "The government is taking all the necessary steps to confront the recent events in Cyprus, the provocations against the Greek Consulate in Istanbul and all developments in general with respect to Greek-Turkish relations, not only with protests to the Turkish side but also with representations to the United Nations, the European Union and other countries," Mr. Reppas said.

    The spokesman stressed that the government would not change its handling of foreign policy merely for the sake of creating impressions. He added that the confrontation of Turkish aggressiveness demanded that the Greek people and political world must be of one mind, while underlining that "Turkey's aspirations will remain in the realm of desire".

    [6] Other reactions

    Athens, 13/08/1996 (ANA)

    Speaking in Trikala yesterday, Political Spring leader Antonis Samaras said that the "tolerance" of the international community towards "guilty" Turkey had encouraged the Turks, "resulting in the terrible loss of a young man's life" and acts of vandalism (against Greek targets) in Istanbul.

    Mr. Samaras expressed the hope that the international community and the Greek government would finally wake up to the fact that Turkey and Europe "do not go together". An announcement issued by the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) said Sunday's incidents in Cyprus were the result of "imperialists encouraging and making use of reactionary and nationalist forces in order to further their plans for the establishment of a new order of things on the island and the broader region".

    The KKE also linked the refusal of the United States and "its allies" to implement UN resolutions on Cyprus with "Washington's plans for the further de-internationalization of the Cyprus problem in order to strengthen its role as arbitrator, replace UN forces with NATO troops and impose Dayton-type solutions".

    Democratic Social Movement (DHKKI) leader Dimitris Tsovolas charged that "instead of condemning and effectively confronting Turkish barbarity and provocativeness, the United Nations and its mechanisms strengthen them with their tolerance and support".

    Mr. Tsovolas called on the political and intellectual leaders of Greece and Cyprus to chart a national strategy of united Hellenism, stressing that "in foreign policy there are no friends and allies, just interests".

    [7] Protest rally

    Athens, 13/08/1996 (ANA)

    A protest rally outside the United Nations offices in Athens is planned for 6:30 p.m. today to condemn the organization's "indifference" to Isaac's murder.

    The protesters are to march to the Turkish embassy from the UN offices.

    [8] Isaac's funeral to be held today

    Nicosia, 13/08/1996 (ANA/CNA)

    Emotions are still running high in Cyprus following the killing of the Greek Cypriot demonstrator by Turks.

    Tassos Isaac, whose wife is five months pregnant, is to be buried today, and his funeral is sure to be turned into a gesture of frustration and indignation against the barbarity of the Turkish occupation regime.

    The savage beating was the main headline in the local press, which carried numerous photographs of Greek Cypriot protesters being beaten by Turkish anti-demonstrators near Dherynia village, on the eastern coast of the island.

    Police forensic experts carried out an inspection earlier yesterday at the place where Isaac was killed while today, coroner Petros Vanezis arrives from London to carry out a post mortem on the body.

    Isaac's home town, Paralimni, has declared a 40-day mourning period in his memory and has condemned the savage manner of his death.

    Reacting to Sunday's events, the local police have said the UN force did not allow them to enter the buffer zone, at Dherynia, to offer assistance to the man, who was filmed being beaten to death by several Turks.

    The police also note that the UN had allowed them to enter into the buffer zone at another spot, outside Nicosia, to restrain Greek Cypriot demonstrators.

    Six demonstrators wounded in Sunday's clashes are still in hospital receiving medical treatment. The remaining 35 who were wounded received first aid treatment and were discharged from hospital.

    Reacting to media criticism about the government's belated warning to halt the anti-occupation ride, acting government spokesman Spyros Arotis said the government received information early Sunday morning that Turkish extremists had taken up their posit ions to entice motorcyclists and justify the intervention of Turkish occupation troops in the buffer zone.

    "Unfortunately, the Turkish occupation forces implemented their designs and displayed barbarity," Mr. Arotis said.

    It is obvious, he added, that had the ride gone ahead, there would have been many more victims.

    Political party leaders expressed abhorrence at the savage killing of the young man.

    Ruling Democratic Rally party leader Yiannakis Matsis said people felt very indignant about the continuing occupation but stressed the ride had to be called off.

    Opposition leader Demetris Christofias, of the left-wing AKEL party, said the shape of the anti-occupation struggle should be reconsidered.

    Democratic party General Secretary Stathis Kittis noted the UN should "lay the blame on the barbarians who killed the Greek Cypriot demonstrator in cold blood."

    Cyprus Socialist EDEK party leader Vassos Lyssarides said the situation was left in the hands of various groups to do whatever it wished.

    George Vassiliou, leader of the Free Democrats, said political responsibilities should be sought since the ride was canceled at the eleventh hour.

    Sunday's murder was front-page material in the Turkish Cypriot press which said Turkish ultra-nationalists lynched Isaac and said so-called Turkish Cypriot police had shown "tolerance" before the acts by groups of fanatics who used objects normally applied in the battlefield.

    [9] Turkish soldiers abduct two young men

    Nicosia, 13/08/1996 (ANA/CNA)

    A 24-year-old Greek Cypriot and a 17-year-old Greek national were abducted yesterday morning by the Turkish army when they lost their direction and entered the Turkish-occupied part of the Republic through the British bases area.

    The Cyprus government was making representations to the UN to secure their release.

    The Cyprus police told CNA that Greek Cypriot Kyriacos Hadjidimou and Greek national Christos Zaharopoulos, were on their way to the Famagusta district, in the southeastern part of the island.

    The two men had taken a road leading to Famagusta through one of the two sovereign military bases (Dhekelia) Britain has retained in Cyprus, since the island won its independence from the UK in 1960. Cypriot senior police officer Simos Andreou informed the UN of the incident and asked for their immediate release, CNA Larnaca correspondent reported.

    He added that members of the UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus visited the two men illegally held at a "police station" in the Turkish-occupied town of Famagusta.

    British bases spokesman Tony Warner told CNA that the British police did not see their car go through and nothing is written down in the log they keep.

    He said the British police "were informed of the fact by the Turkish army, that detained them" and said "the incident was also confirmed by a UN soldier."

    Mr. Warner said the two men might have gone in through one of the tracks west of the Strovilia region, in the bases.

    The British bases spokesman noted the bases "have no power to stop people" from going into areas Turkey occupies since its invasion of 1974, "but make it their duty, if someone looks lost, to ask them their business and warn them they are going towards a Turkish military checkpoint."

    [10] Greek reaction

    Athens, 13/08/1996 (ANA)

    The foreign ministry announced last night that the Greek charge d' affaires in Nicosia met with the UN secretary - general's deputy representative on Cyprus, Gustav Feisel, and asked him to intervene for the freeing of Greek citizen Christos Zaharopoulos, who was arrested by Turkish occupation forces.

    The Greek government will resort to all appropriate actions to secure the speedy release of its national, the statement added.

    [11] US decries Cyprus violence, urges peace talks

    Washington, 13/08/1996 (Reuter)

    The United States yesterday deplored the outbreak of violence in the UN buffer zone on Cyprus and called for direct Greek-Turkish peace negotiations to end the island's division.

    "The United States deplores the violence that occurred in the UN buffer zone of Cyprus August 11 and particularly the brutal killing of a young Greek Cypriot," State Department deputy spokesman Glyn Davies told reporters.

    "This tragic violence underscores the need for both sides to reduce tensions along the UN buffer zone and to move to direct and comprehensive negotiations to end the division of the island," he said.

    Mr. Davies, noting the incident was under investigation, declined to assign blame, saying. "We'll want to know precisely what triggered this ... before we make any further assessments." But he also said: "This appears to have been a peaceful protest that these individuals were engaged in. And certainly there should not have been the level of violence that we saw, including the very brutal killing of one of the protesters who came into the zone."

    US Ambassador Ken Brill and other US officials on Cyprus knew about the demonstration in advance and were in touch with United Nations and Cypriot authorities throughout the period when the incident occurred.

    Mr. Davies said "the situation evolved very quickly and in what were to us very unexpected ways."

    He said Mr. Brill planned to meet with the UN chief of mission in Cyprus "to evaluate what occurred and how what happened might help the United Nations and others on the island avoid such incidents in the future."

    [12] UN angry over bloody incidents

    United Nations, 13/08/1996 (ANA/Reuter)

    United Nations officials yesterday reacted angrily to charges of responsibility on the part of the organization's forces on the island over Sunday's bloody incidents. "It is not the task of the United Nations to control demonstrations, and its limited resources were stretched to the fullest on Sunday as they tried to control the fast-moving disparate groups of demonstrators on both sides, some of them armed, who entered the UN buffer zone simultaneously in several areas," spokeswoman Sylvana Foa told reporters. "This responsibility belongs to the authorities on the island. Needless to say, it would have been better to prevent this kind of event which does nothing to further efforts to find a durable solution to the Cyprus problem," she said.

    [13] Bikers' run bigger than European borders

    Nicosia, 13/08/1996 (ANA/CNA)

    "This run is bigger than European borders and is for freedom of movement," European bikers, who gathered at the Ledra Palace check point in Nicosia, the world's only divided capital, said here Sunday evening.

    Around 200 bikers, in their greatest majority Europeans who took part in the pan-European ride which started from Berlin on August 2 and which aimed to finish in the Turkish-occupied northern coastal town of Kyrenia, gathered at Ledra Palace and attempted through the UN Peacekeeping Force on the island (UNFICYP) to cross into the occupied areas.

    Thirteen representatives of the bikers coming from 13 different European countries, accompanied by UNFICYP members, reached the Turkish occupation army check point and asked for permission for all bikers to ride to Kyrenia. "They (the Turkish forces) asked us to fill in a written application for ourselves and the bikers with us to go through," a British representative of the European motorcyclists, told reporters.

    "This we refused to do," he said, adding the Turkish occupation forces asked "what the point was all about," a question he refused to answer. "This run is bigger than European borders," the British motorcyclist stressed, noting that in their ride from the "ex-divided city of Berlin to the currently divided city of Nicosia" they crossed "many borders and failed to cross only one, that, of Serbia."

    [14] European reactions

    Paris, 13/08/1996 (ANA/AFP)

    Paris yesterday expressed its "deepest regret" at the violence which caused the death of a Greek-Cypriot demonstrator on Sunday.

    "We express our deepest regret at the violence which provoked the death of a young Greek-Cypriot following clashes between the two communities and the infringement of the green line by the protesters," French foreign ministry spokesman Yves Dourieux said.

    He added that France wanted to salute the stance of the Austrian contingent of the UN peacekeeping force in Cyprus (UNFICYP), some of whom were injured during the clashes. The actions of the Austrian blue berets "averted a more serious situation", the spokesman added.

    Paris reiterated its desire for a "complete and lasting political settlement to the Cyprus problem in the framework of its accession to the European Union".

    Britain also expressed its concern at the clashes. "We are concerned at the events which took place on the occasion of the motorcyclists' gathering and express our regret at the death of a young man ... such events underline the imperative need to find a solution to the inter-communal differences in Cyprus," a Foreign Office spokesman said.

    In Brussels, an ANA dispatch reported the European Commission did not comment on the events which took place in Cyprus on Sunday, with a spokesman saying the Commission was still in the process of being informed and as such would make no comment.

    The Belgian press, however, gave coverage to the events as well as the Greek government's appeal to the international community to deal with the Cyprus problem.

    [15] 2 Turkish illegal immigrant smugglers imprisoned

    Athens, 13/08/1996 (ANA)

    A three-member misdemeanors court on Samos yesterday sentenced two Turks to ten years imprisonment and fined them each seven million drachmas for smuggling illegal immigrants into Greece.

    Halil Top and Mehmet Keles were arrested by coast-guard officials off the island of Samos after a speed-boat chase on Saturday.

    They were found guilty of smuggling nine Iraqi illegal immigrants who were arrested just off the coast of the island on August 5.

    Meanwhile, a total of 297 illegal immigrants from Albania, Bulgaria, Pakistan, Russia and Africa were arrested by police in the prefectures of Kavala and Xanthi, police said yesterday.

    Proceedings have been initiated to deport the illegal aliens.

    [16] Greek navy ship due in Limassol today

    Nicosia, 13/08/1996 (ANA - G. Leonidas)

    The Cypriot defense ministry yesterday announced that the Greek navy training vessel 'Aris' will arrive in the port of Limassol today and will remain there until Friday.

    The visit is in the framework of the navy cadets training programme, the statement said.

    [17] Municipal cultural companies to receive boost

    Athens, 13/08/1996 (ANA)

    Culture Minister Stavros Benos and Mayor of Alexandroupolis Ilias Evangelidis yesterday signed a draft 10-year agreement concerning all sectors of activity of the city's Cultural Company (EPADA).

    The minister also announced the creation of an archaeological museum in the city, which will be the second in Greece, after Thessaloniki, to be linked with the Internet's cultural regional network.

    Mr. Benos added that a draft bill currently being prepared by the interior ministry provides for a very significant boost to initiatives by municipal enterprises, which will eligible for the same incentives as private investments in Thrace.

    [18] Juntist Papadopoulos hospitalized

    Athens, 13/08/1996 (ANA)

    Former dictator George Papadopoulos, who is currently serving a life sentence, was transferred early this morning from prison to the Tzaneion Hospital in Piraeus with severe respiratory problems and a high temperature.

    The former army colonel headed the April 21, 1967 coup d'etat that imposed a dictatorship in Greece that collapsed seven years later.

    [19] Greece accuses FYROM of creating 'negative climate'

    Athens, 13/08/1996 (ANA)

    Greece yesterday accused the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) of creating "a negative climate" in bilateral relations, which "renders unnecessary any meeting between the two countries' foreign ministers in New York, on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly sessions".

    The foreign ministry statement followed declarations by FYROM Foreign Minister Ljubomir Frckovski who said in an interview with a Greek Sunday paper that FYROM does not intend to accept a compromise solution regarding his country's name.

    Under an interim agreement signed by the two neighboring countries in New York under UN auspices last September, Greece and FYROM are to proceed with discussions to find a mutually acceptable solution for the name issue.

    Greece objects to the former Yugoslav republic's use of the name 'Macedonia', saying it implies expansionist designs against its northern province of the same name.

    [20] Frckovski says FYROM has 'learnt to live with Greek pressures'

    Vienna, 13/08/1996 (ANA - D. Dimitrakoudis)

    Mr. Frckovski claimed yesterday that his country had grown used to Greek "pressures" and had learnt to live with them.

    "We have got used to Greece's pressures" and tense relations, he said during an interview with the Austrian daily 'Der Standard' published yesterday, adding, "we can live under these pressures."

    "All other neighboring countries have recognized my country with the name 'Macedonia'," he added.

    FYROM's foreign minister expressed the opinion that Athens' position regarding the name of 'Macedonia', "first, cannot be justified legally, and secondly, is ridiculous". "Macedonia", he says, "considers that it is at most a bilateral, not an international, problem". Mr. Frckovski acknowledged that since the signing of the interim accord in New York last year, economic relations between the two countries have improved.

    [21] Olympic medals place Greece in third position in EU rankings according to population

    Brussels, 13/08/1996 (ANA - M. Spinthourakis) Greece's four gold Olympic medals have placed Greece in third position in the European Community's tally of medals from the Atlanta Olympics in relation to population, the EU's statistical service, Eurostat, said yesterday.

    Eurostat said the EU's 15 members had won a total of 229 medals against the USA's 101, Russia's 63, China's 50 and Australia's 41. EU countries won a total of 75 gold medals, compared to 44 by the US, 26 by Russia, 16 by China and nine by Australia.

    Discounting population, Greece's total of eight medals placed it in joint seventh position with Sweden overall in the EU, while it was placed in fifth place in the EU gold medal tables.

    [22] Planned tour of Mt. Athos by Prince Charles canceled

    Athens, 13/08/1996 (ANA)

    A planned visit by Charles, Prince of Wales and successor to the British throne, to the Mount Athos monastic community has been called off due to bad weather conditions off the coast of Mt. Athos, an announcement issued from Karyes, capital of the monastic community, said yesterday.

    Prince Charles has been touring the Aegean aboard Greek shipping magnate Yiannis Latsis' yacht 'Alexander', and his itinerary included a visit scheduled for yesterday to the Vatopedion monastery.

    [23] Pangalos to visit Iran

    Athens, 13/08/1996 (ANA)

    A foreign ministry announcement issued yesterday said that Foreign Minister Theodoros Pangalos is to pay a two-day working visit to Tehran, Iran, on August 21 and 22.

    [24] Constantopoulos calls for clear Gov't stance on early elections

    Athens, 13/08/1996 (ANA)

    Coalition of the Left and Progress party leader Nikos Constantopoulos yesterday renewed his call on the government to clarify its position on reports of early elections.

    Speaking during his tour of the Ileia prefecture, Mr. Constantopoulos said the issue of early elections "was on the boil both within the government and without".

    He asked the prime minister to respond to his question as to when the next elections will be held and under what electoral law and system.

    Mr. Constantopoulos also "wondered" why the prime minister did not call for a political party leaders' council to be convened (under the chairmanship of President of the Republic Kostis Stephanopoulos) "if a national issue really exists" necessitating such a meeting.

    Speaking on issues affecting the agriculture sector, he said the problems affecting the farming community had reached a dangerous point which could "lead to social explosions".

    Mr. Constantopoulos accused the government of having no agricultural policy, and added that "its stance imposes irresolvable and deadlocked situations on the Greek farmer".

    Turning to current affairs, the Coalition party leader said Greece was awaiting plans which would be put into action after the US elections, and that these "plans" would take the form of pressure on "Greek-Turkish issues, on the FYROM problem, on Cyprus and on the Middle East".

    End of English language section.

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