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Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 97-05-06

Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

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


Greek Press & Information Office
Ottawa, Canada
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  • [01] Greece names members of 'committee of experts'
  • [02] No 'real progress' in last week's meeting, Reppas says
  • [03] US ambassador expresses optimism
  • [04] Interpol to discuss crimes against children during Thessaloniki conference
  • [05] US delegation arrives in Crete
  • [06] Pangalos briefs opposition party leaders
  • [07] Kranidiotis calls for further Balkan co-operation
  • [08] Visiting Bulgarian delegation predicts improvement in bilateral relations after elections
  • [09] Spokesman on Turkish-Israleli exercises
  • [10] Simitis congratulates Blair on election to British premiership
  • [11] Santer expected in Athens later this week
  • [12] PASOK EB discusses Greek-Turkish relations
  • [13] ND leader Karamanlis to see Niles tomorrow
  • [14] 32 Pol. An members return to New Democracy
  • [15] Venizelos: hopes persist for a return of Parthenon Marbles
  • [16] Greek, Polish defense ministers meet in Warsaw
  • [17] Conference on renewable energy opens in Athens
  • [18] Greek ferry launched in Sweden
  • [19] Greece to participate in swimwear exhibition
  • [20] IMF delegation begins Athens visit
  • [21] Workers, management call truce at Halyvourgiki
  • [22] Work stoppages cause delays to domestic flights
  • [23] Greek company signs agreement to modernize Yugoslav mines
  • [24] Total of 26 bodies recovered after boats carrying illegal immigrants sank Friday
  • [25] Theodorakis flies home after falling ill during concert

  • [01] Greece names members of 'committee of experts'

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    Greece last night named professors Krateros Ioannou and Argyris Fatouros as members of the Greek Committee of Experts who, along with a corresponding Turkish team, will examine Greek-Turkish relations with the mediation of the European Union's Dutch presidency.

    The decision to appoint a "committee of experts" had been taken by the two neighboring countries last week, after an EU-Turkey Association Council meeting.

    Greece has said the task of the committee, whose nature is procedural, is to submit a report by mid-June with the common positions and proposals of the two sides, provided an agreement is reached on certain points.

    Mr. Ioannou is a professor of international law at Thrace University while Mr. Fatouros is a professor of international economic law at Athens University. Both are members of the Foreign Ministry's Scientific Council.

    According to unofficial reports, the members of the Turkish committee of experts will be Suat Bilge, a professor, and Sukru Elegtag, a diplomat.

    Meetings between the two sides are expected to begin this month. According to the decision taken in Luxembourg last week, they will have to deliver their joint report by mid-June on processes proposed to resolve Greek-Turkish problems.

    According to the same decision, the joint report will not be binding for the Greek and Turkish governments.

    [02] No 'real progress' in last week's meeting, Reppas says

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    Government spokesman Dimitris Reppas, said no real developments or progress had arisen from last week's meeting between the Greek and Turkish foreign ministers. Mr. Reppas was commenting on an article in Sunday's newspaper "To Vima" concerning the meeting.

    The spokesman said that although Turkish Foreign Minister Tansu Ciller had not reiterated the term "casus belli" with regard to Greece's right to extend its territorial waters to 12 nautical miles, this did not amount to a commitment, nor could it be perceived as such.

    Meanwhile, with regard to the current visit by US State Department official Carey Cavanaugh, Mr. Reppas clarified that no talks had been scheduled with government officials in Athens.

    Mr. Cavanaugh is in Greece to attend the annual bilateral defense talks, which are to be held in Crete this year.

    [03] US ambassador expresses optimism

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    US Ambassador to Athens Thomas Niles yesterday expressed his optimism that problems in Greek-Turkish relations and the Cyprus issue will be resolved sooner or later.

    The ambassador made the statements during an interview on a private television station program.

    Mr. Niles said hopeful messages also existed in the past to resolve problems between Greece and Turkey and mentioned, as an example, the meeting held in 1988 between the late Greek premier, Andreas Papandreou, and the late Turkish president, Turgut Ozal .

    He added that there must be "a decisive policy, good ideas and good luck, which are some of the elements which would promote a solution" to problems in Greek-Turkish relations.

    Mr. Niles denied reports claiming that US President Bill Clinton had addressed a letter to Greek Prime Minister Costas Simitis in which he expresses complaints that there is a delay in the development of Greek-Turkish relations.

    "This report is absolutely groundless. There is no dissatisfaction with Greece by the US," he said.

    The ambassador added there may be a more active participation by the US in the coming months concerning both the Cyprus issue and bilateral relations between Greece and Turkey.

    He disclosed that the participation of a new official from the US is being discussed in connection with the Cyprus issue.

    [04] Interpol to discuss crimes against children during Thessaloniki conference

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    The Interpol work group concerned with crimes against children begins a three-day conference in Thessaloniki today in order to discuss offenses against juveniles.

    Senior Greek police officers yesterday outlined the extent of the problem during a press conference held on the occasion of the conference, which is being organized in Greece for the first time.

    According to Attica Police officer Ioanna Bekiari, who works in the child protection department and is the Greek Police's liaison officer with Interpol, most cases of sexual exploitation of children are reported in the Far East and in Latin America. In the Philippines alone, 180,000 children are known to be involved in prostitution.

    Ms Bekiari added that although the situation recently appears to have improved somewhat in these regions, the number of crimes against children in eastern Europe, and in Baltic countries in particular, is increasing.

    She added that authorities are not alarmed by the situation in Greece, since only 264 offenses of any kind were reported to have been perpetrated against children in 1995. However, Ms. Bekiari noted that offenses against children by relatives are rarely reported to authorities.

    The press conference also referred to the deficiencies in legislation concerning the production, trafficking and possession of child pornography, since under existing laws, only the public display of such material is prosecuted and punished. A bill is currently being drawn up to close the legislative loophole.

    Interpol's three-day international conference is expected to be attended by police delegations from 35 countries.

    [05] US delegation arrives in Crete

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    A US delegation arrived in Iraklion, Crete, yesterday to participate in Greek-American defense talks due to start today.

    The delegation is headed by US Assistant Defense Secretary John Londal, accompanied by the director for the State Department's southern Europe bureau Carey Cavanaugh.

    Delegation members were welcomed at Iraklion airport by National Defense Under-secretary Dimitris Apostolakis and other officials.

    "We think that differences between Greece and Turkey must be defused," Mr. Londal said on arrival.

    "A defusion in relations will be of particular importance and the positive stance of the governments of the two countries encourages us," he added.

    "Turkey and Greece are our allies in NATO and good associates in this very important part of the world and we consider important every effort which can be made to decrease tension between partners of ours," he said.

    Asked to comment on Mr. Cavanaugh's visit to Crete, Mr. Londal said "firstly he is a good friend of mine and secondly we co-operate closely on issues concerning southern Europe."

    The main issues to be discussed during today's meeting are the security situation in the Balkans and the southeastern Mediterranean, and defense co-operation between Greece and the US.

    Greek-Turkish relations and developments concerning the Cyprus issue will also be raised, but not in the form of dialogue.

    The meeting will further focus on issues anticipated by the agreement between Greece and the US, such as defense and the exchange of information.

    [06] Pangalos briefs opposition party leaders

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    Foreign Minister Theodoros Pangalos held a meeting yesterday with Secretary-General of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) Aleka Papariga, focusing on the latest developments in Greek-Turkish affairs.

    After the meeting, Ms Papariga told reporters she supported dialogue with Turkey as long as Ankara respected Greek sovereign rights and international law.

    Mr. Pangalos is to meet with Coalition of the Left and Progress party leader Nikos Constantopoulos on Thursday in order to discuss the course of Greek-Turkish relations.

    Mr. Pangalos has also briefed main opposition New Democracy party leader Costas Karamanlis.

    [07] Kranidiotis calls for further Balkan co-operation

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    Foreign Under-secretary Yiannos Kranidiotis yesterday called on Balkan states to intensify their co-operation despite existing problems.

    He made the statement during his official opening of a two-day meeting of political directors of the foreign ministries of the countries participating in the Balkan Conference for Security and Co-operation in Northeastern Europe.

    The meeting is being held in preparation for a Balkan foreign ministers' conference, to be held in Thessaloniki on June 9-10.

    Mr. Kranidiotis said co-operation in the Balkans should be based on principles of sovereign equality between the countries, the lack of violence or threats of violence, border inviolability, territorial integrity, human rights and fundamental freedoms, a s well as the respect and implementation of the obligations of international law.

    Mr. Kranidiotis noted Greece's active participation in Balkan co-operation, which aims to create a broader European region in which Balkan states could participate as members.

    [08] Visiting Bulgarian delegation predicts improvement in bilateral relations after elections

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    Bulgarian Deputy Prime Minister Todor Kovalciev and Charalambi Anchev said yesterday that Greek-Bulgarian relations will develop faster after the new government takes over during the next few days.

    Visiting Thessaloniki at the head of a delegation, the two Bulgarian politicians held a meeting with Macedonia-Thrace Minister Philippos Petsalnikos.

    After the meeting, they expressed gratitude for Greece's dispatches of humanitarian aid to Bulgaria and its support for Bulgaria's accession to European organizations.

    They also expressed Sofia's will to upgrade relations with Athens.

    Mr. Petsalnikos said relations between the two countries could be further improved, adding that there was a wide field for co-operation.

    [09] Spokesman on Turkish-Israleli exercises

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    Government spokesman Dimitris Reppas yesterday said the joint military exercise between Israel, Turkey and the United States could be avoided or restricted "in order not to intensify further the already heavy atmosphere."

    [10] Simitis congratulates Blair on election to British premiership

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    Prime Minister and PASOK leader Costas Simitis yesterday congratulated his British counterpart, Tony Blair, on his election to the premiership last week.

    "Warm congratulations for your landslide victory, which will bring about a historic change in Great Britain's course," Mr. Simitis' telegram said.

    "I am confident of a warm co-operation both for European unification and for peace and stability in Europe, as well as for a new strategy for democratic socialism and the center-left on the threshold of the 21st century," it added.

    Meanwhile, Foreign Under-secretary Yiannos Kranidiotis told the Athens News Agency that PASOK has excellent relations with the British Labor Party.

    Mr. Kranidiotis said the Labor Party's election victory "will considerably change the scene in Europe and will boost Greek-British relations."

    [11] Santer expected in Athens later this week

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    European Commission President Jacques Santer will meet with President Kostis Stephanopoulos, Prime Minister Costas Simitis, Parliament President Apostolos Kaklamanis and the leader of the main opposition New Democracy party Costas Karamanlis during his vi sit to Athens, due to begin on Thursday.

    Mr. Santer is expected to meet with a number of government ministers during his four-day visit, on the occasion of Robert Schumann Day on May 9.

    Mr. Santer's official program has not yet been released but sources said he would arrive late on Thursday and meet that evening with Mr. Stephanopoulos and Mr. Kaklamanis.

    On Friday, the Commission president is expected to attend a ceremony at the Old Parliament House before meeting with the prime minister and traveling on to Thessaloniki, where he is scheduled to speak at a Federation of Northern Greek Industries event.

    On Saturday, Mr. Santer will meet with Mr. Karamanlis and then visit Mount Athos, the all-male monastic community, where he will visit various sites the next day.

    [12] PASOK EB discusses Greek-Turkish relations

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    Prime Minister Costas Simitis chaired a meeting last night of the ruling PASOK Executive Bureau, focusing on recent developments on Greek-Turkish relations.

    According to informed sources, during the meeting, which lasted about four hours, Mr. Simitis and Foreign Minister Theodoros Pangalos assured the bureau members that the government's strategy concerning Greek-Turkish relations remains unchanged and that the latest moves are elements of tactics which might be variable.

    The same sources said that Education Minister Gerassimos Arsenis and another two members of the bureau expressed serious reservations on the effectiveness of the government's recent handling of Greek-Turkish relations.

    Earlier yesterday, Mr. Simitis chaired a meeting of PASOK's Political Secretariat focusing on the party's action plan for the coming two months.

    PASOK Secretary Costas Skandalidis said the meeting centered on the party's political events, starting with the Parliamentary Group's Synod tomorrow and the Panhellenic Confederation of the party's administration officials over the weekend.

    [13] ND leader Karamanlis to see Niles tomorrow

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    Main opposition New Democracy party leader Costas Karamanlis will meet with US Ambassador to Greece Thomas Niles tomorrow, an ND announcement said yesterday.

    According to the announcement, Mr. Karamanlis will meet with US special envoy for the Cyprus issue Carey Cavanaugh on Thursday and on Saturday he will meet with the President of the European Commission Jacques Santer in Thessaloniki.

    Mr. Karamanlis will arrive in Thessaloniki a day before his meeting with Mr. Santer in order to address the general assembly of the Northern Greek Industrialists Association.

    On Thursday he will meet with Cypriot Socialist EDEK party leader Vassos Lyssarides.

    Yesterday morning, Mr. Karamanlis met with the President of the Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE), Andrew Athens.

    [14] 32 Pol. An members return to New Democracy

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    A total of 32 Political Spring members - including a number of failed candidates at last year's national elections - yesterday left the party and rejoined main opposition New Democracy.

    Among the 32, all of whom are from the Serres prefecture, is former minister Nikos Kleitos, who held a high-ranking post within the party.

    A New Democracy press release said the group had responded to ND leader Costas Karamanlis' public call on Political Spring party members to work with ND.

    Political Spring was established in 1992 by former New Democracy foreign minister Antonis Samaras. A number of then ruling party New Democracy MPs defected to the new party, leading directly to the loss of the Mitsotakis government's majority in Parliament and the calling of general elections.

    Political Spring garnered 4.87 percent of the vote in the subsequent elections and held 10 seats in Parliament but failed to surpass the 3.0 percent threshold in last year's elections which would have given it representation in Parliament.

    [15] Venizelos: hopes persist for a return of Parthenon Marbles

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    The return of the Parthenon friezes from the British Museum is a standing and basic axis of Greece's cultural policy, Culture Minister Evangelos Venizelos said yesterday.

    Mr. Venizelos was responding to press questions following the blunt refusal of the new British Heritage Secretary Chris Smith to return the 5th century artworks, better known in the West as the Elgin Marbles, after the British diplomat who removed them from the Parthenon during the Ottoman occupation.

    "It is our desire in the framework of relevant recommendations by UNESCO, that this issue be brought up at a bilateral level as it has on occasion in past with talks between my British counterpart and the British ambassador in Athens", Mr. Venizelos said.

    Mr. Venizelos said he would soon send the new British government a letter, written with the assistance of the British Committee for the Return of the Marbles.

    He said he had refrained from sending such a letter to date so as not to allow the issue to become the object of pre-election wrangling.

    Mr. Venizelos noted that while Neil Kinnock led the Labor Party there had been a political and ethical commitment from the party for the return of the Marbles.

    He added that he hoped for a meeting with his British counterpart in Luxembourg on June 30 in the framework of the EU Council of Culture Ministers.

    He describing as a "jibe" a statement, Sunday, by his British counterpart that the classical sculptures were a part of the British Museum's culture and visited by more than a million visitors a year, adding that Mr. Smith announced he would meet with Mr. Smith on June 30 in Luxembourg. "Then, he will look into the issue with greater seriousness and bigger depth," he said.

    "The return of the marbles does not have anything to do with the return of other cultural goods," he said. "It is about integrity, aesthetics and the architecture of the greatest monument of the western civilization..."

    Jules Dassin, renowned film director and husband of late culture minister Melina Mercouri, who is president of the committee for the return of the Marbles, said:

    "The hasty move of Greek journalists to ask for answers from ministers who have only just assumed office saddens me. Of course we are upset by the answer.

    "But it is interesting that the British Foreign Secretary believes the Greek people should be grateful for the manner in which the Marbles have been kept in England. For someone to ask for our gratitude obviously indicates the Marbles are ours. We are determined to intensify our efforts until justice is done."

    [16] Greek, Polish defense ministers meet in Warsaw

    Warsaw, 06/05/1997 (ANA/Reuter)

    Polish and Greek experts will meet soon to draft an agreement on scientific and technological co-operation in the military and defense industry fields, the two countries' defense ministers said yesterday.

    Greek National Defense Minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos, who met his Polish counterpart, Stanislaw Dobrzanski, during a one-day working visit to Warsaw yesterday, reaffirmed support for Poland's bid to join NATO, the western defense alliance to which Greece already belongs.

    Mr. Tsohatzopoulos reiterated Greece's will to support the accession of Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic to NATO in the alliance's enlargement process to the East.

    "Turkey does not have the ability to prevent such development since it is pursuing to upgrade relations with the European Union," Mr. Tsohatzopoulos said.

    Mr. Tsohatzopoulos reiterated a Greek position that Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic and Cyprus be the first countries to be granted accession to the European Union in the next enlargement round.

    PAP news agency reported the ministers as telling a joint news conference their countries, which signed an agreement on military co-operation in 1992, planned to increase such links.

    In preliminary talks, Greece expressed an interest in the new Huzar combat helicopter being developed in Poland, and in collaboration over maritime technology, the agency said.

    With regard to the Greek armed forces' supplies, Poland has proposed the supply of a transport helicopter, transport aircraft and radar aircraft. The proposal is expected to be examined next month during a visit to Warsaw by the Greek armed forces chief of staff and members of the General Directorate for Supplies. Mr. Dobrzanski said there was no danger that the Greek parliament would fail to ratify Poland's eagerly sought admission to NATO, which must be approved by all 16 existing member states.

    Earlier in the day, Mr. Tsohatzopoulos met with Polish Foreign Minister Darius Rozati and Alternate Prime Minister M. Pietrevic.

    [17] Conference on renewable energy opens in Athens

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    Development Minister Vasso Papandreou yesterday announced the creation of a model settlement on an uninhabited island whose planning will be based on bioclimatics and its energy needs will be met exclusively by renewable energy sources.

    The minister made the statement while inaugurating the three-day European Congress on Renewable Energy (RE) Implementation in a southern Athens suburb yesterday.

    Ms Papandreou stressed that the congress must arrive at specific proposals on realistic policy measures aimed at doubling the amount of renewable energy sources used in the European Union by the year 2010, which she said is "an ambitious but feasible target".

    Speaking during yesterday's session, EU Energy Commissioner Christos Papoutsis said energy policies must become more environment-friendly, open to technologies of the future and must rely less on imported fossil fuels.

    Mr. Papoutsis said the conference aims to highlight manners of overcoming obstacles appearing in the wider dissemination of REs, in order to enable their use in Europe to increase from 6 to 12 per cent of energy consumption by the year 2010.

    The European Commission proposed this target, at the initiative of Mr. Papoutsis, in the "green paper" it issued recently for REs.

    Those speaking during yesterday's morning session included Willy Leonhardt, Environment, Energy and Transport Minister of the German state of Saarland and President of the European Council on Solar Energy, the co-organizer of the conference.

    Mr. Leonhardt spoke of the need to create a new legislative and regulating framework at European level in order to harmonize issues concerning RE tariff policy and the linking of renewable energy systems to electricity networks.

    [18] Greek ferry launched in Sweden

    Landskrova, Sweden, 06/05/1997 (ANA - T. Lambropoulos)

    The largest and fastest Greek ferry boat, "Ikaros", was launched at in this Swedish port yesterday. The ship took roughly 300 workers and technicians and approximately six months to build.

    The ship, whose total construction will cost the 'Minoan Lines' company 125 million dollars and will be completed in Norway's Fosen shipyards by the end of November, will employ 350 Greek seamen. It will have a cruising speed of 27 knots and will have a capacity of 1,500 passengers and 800 cars.

    [19] Greece to participate in swimwear exhibition

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    The Greek Overseas Trade Organization (OPE) yesterday announced Greece's participation in the international undergarment and swimwear exhibition "Lyon Mode City" in Lyons, France, to take place between September 6-8.

    The exhibition will present bathing suits to be worn in the spring and summer of 1998 and textiles for the autumn and winter of 1998-1999.

    Those interested in more information can call the organization's offices in Athens at 99.82.231, in Thessaloniki at 031-26.21.20 and Ioannina at 0651-32.763 by May 15 at the latest.

    [20] IMF delegation begins Athens visit

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    A five-member International Monetary Fund delegation yesterday began its round of contacts in Athens on the course and prospects of the Greek economy.

    Reports said the delegation considered the government's estimates and forecasts for the course of inflation, investments, deficits and gross domestic product to be "realistic".

    The government believes that the state of tax revenues will improve this month, following disappointing rates of inflows since the beginning of the year.

    The delegation is scheduled to meet with officials from the State Audit Council, the Bank of Greece, and industrialists, as well as government and ministry officials before it departs on May 15.

    The report will be released towards the beginning of July, although the delegation is expected to brief National Economy and Finance Minister Yiannos Papantoniou on their conclusions before they depart.

    [21] Workers, management call truce at Halyvourgiki

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    A temporary solution to a labor dispute at the Halyvourgiki steelworks has been found following a meeting yesterday at the labor ministry. Management, workers and government agreed on a withdrawal of all unilateral announcements, particularly one by the management introducing "flexible" working hours including 10 and 12-hour shifts.

    The meeting was attended by Halyvourgiki owner P. Angelopoulos, who maintained that the management's proposals were not only aimed at cutting costs but would benefit workers. He said the future of the company was not in danger.

    Labor Under-secretary Christos Protopapas said a dialogue would soon begin aimed at securing the company's viability as well as jobs.

    General Confederation of Workers of Greece (GSEE) president Christos Polyzogopoulos said the company's proposals would have led to a violation of labor legislation.

    President of the workers' union Nikos Hondros said the workers would not negotiate their fundamental rights, but were willing to discuss a rescue plan for the company which, according to some unionists, would inevitably raise the question of certain "given" rights.

    [22] Work stoppages cause delays to domestic flights

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    Olympic Aviation staff began yesterday rotating work stoppages from 05.00 to 17.00, which caused delays and cancellations of flights, some of which were carried out with skeleton staff.

    The airline staff are demanding the development of the company, a subsidiary of the national carrier Olympic Airways. If their demands are not satisfied, they will hold more strike action on May 12 and 19.

    Meanwhile, the national railway (OSE) staff are to hold four-hour work stoppages today, Wednesday and Thursday this week (from 12.00 to 16.00)., in protest over the company's failure to sign a new collective labor agreement.

    [23] Greek company signs agreement to modernize Yugoslav mines

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    A substantial agreement was signed yesterday morning between the Greek company Mytilineos S.A. and the Yugoslav state mining group RHMK Trepca, the state export organization General Export and the Jugobank.

    Under the terms of the five-year agreement, valued at $517 million, the Greek company is to develop and modernize Yugoslavia's mines, along with supplying the latest mechanical equipment, the processing of ores at Trepca's installations and the promotion of the finished product on the international market.

    The agreement was signed at the national economy ministry in the presence of senior ministry, banking and business officials from the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

    [24] Total of 26 bodies recovered after boats carrying illegal immigrants sank Friday

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    The Turkish coast guard has said it recovered, over the weekend, the bodies of 24 Iraqi illegal immigrants and the Turkish owners of two boats used to ferry them across to Greece from Turkey, following an accident believed to have occurred last Friday.

    According to a survivor being treated in a hospital in Kusadasi, 28 illegal immigrants and three Turkish guides attempted to cross over to the Aegean island of Samos in two boats.

    The survivor, named as Nacettin Ahmet, said one of the boats began sinking on the way. He added that as the other boat moved in to help, some of the passengers on the sinking vessel panicked and jumped overboard. They clung on to the second boat, which in turn capsized, Mr. Ahmet said.

    Turkish officials said the death toll from the accident is expected to reach 30.

    Samos port officials had recovered the bodies of a 12-year-old boy and a woman of 30 on Friday and Saturday, bringing the number of fatalities to 26 so far.

    [25] Theodorakis flies home after falling ill during concert

    Athens, 06/05/1997 (ANA)

    Greek composer Mikis Theodorakis flew home to Athens from Berlin yesterday after suffering respiratory problems during a three-hour concert and canceling the rest of his concert tour of Europe.

    According to Mr. Theodorakis' physician, Dr. Christos Kalaitzis, the composer's condition is stable, although he is "in immediate need of tests and therapy".

    "His life is not in danger, but he must stop (work) immediately," said Dr. Kalaitzis.

    Late last month Mr. Theodorakis announced his intention to give a concert in the buffer zone dividing the island of Cyprus, along with Turkish singer Zulfi Livaneli, aimed at promoting understanding and rapprochement between Greece and Turkey.

    Upon his arrival in Athens, Mr. Theodorakis told reporters that the first symptoms of respiratory problems appeared last Tuesday, prior to his departure.

    He underwent tests at the Onassion Cardiology Center before leaving for Germany, the results of which indicated he was in good health.

    When symptoms persisted, the Greek composer said, he was advised by German doctors to cancel his tour and return home for further medical tests.

    End of English language section.

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