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Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 97-08-16

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

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

ATHENS NEWS AGENCY BULLETIN (No 1264), August 16, 1997

Greek Press & Information Office
Ottawa, Canada
E-Mail Address:


  • [01] Second round of UN-LED Cyprus talks ends in deadlock
  • [02] Assumption of the Virgin celebrated throughout Greece
  • [03] US says EU must leave door open for Turkish membership
  • [04] Tsohatzopoulos to visit Czech Republic
  • [05] Respect for international law reiterated on Armed Forces Day
  • [06] .... Tsohatzopoulos
  • [07] Ecumenical Patriarch to visit US
  • [08] Ecumenical Patriarch due in Chios today
  • [09] Yugoslav FM talks in Athens 'very constructive and comprehensive'
  • [10] Britain's Princess Diana pays private visit to Greece
  • [11] Brazilian IOC member in Athens
  • [12] Turkey ends unilateral confidence-building measures in Aegean
  • [13] President to tour Peloponnese
  • [14] Greek ATM network expands with new Alpha Credit Bank terminals
  • [15] Stocks rangebound in scant holiday trade
  • [16] Bourse likely to rejoin top emerging markets - Salomon

  • [01] Second round of UN-LED Cyprus talks ends in deadlock

    Glion-Sur-Montreux, Switzerland (ANA - D. Constantakopoulos)

    The second round of UN-sponsored Cyprus talks between President Glafcos Clerides and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash ended in deadlock here yesterday.

    In an afternoon press conference, the UN Secretary General's Special Advisor for the Cyprus problem, Diego Cordovez, who chaired both rounds of talks between the leaders of the two Cypriot communities, said "discussions were useful even when we faced difficulties here in Glion."

    He added, however, that the Secretary General "intends to continue his good offices mission" on Cyprus and said he does not entirely share the view that "we are back to where we were when we started."

    Earlier, President Clerides told a press conference "at the end of this week we are exactly where we were when we came here," last Monday.

    Also speaking at a press conference earlier, Mr. Denktash said the five-day talks, which took place at the Righi Vaudois hotel in Glion-sur-Montreux, ended in deadlock.

    Mr. Denktash accused the European Union of having thrown a "bomb" into the peace process by deciding to open accession negotiations next year with the internationally-recognized government of the Republic of Cyprus.

    Nevertheless, he said the talks were "useful", because "we now know where the two sides are".

    The Turkish Cypriot leader said talks on Cyprus' bid for EU membership must be canceled for UN mediation to continue, and threatened that the division of Cyprus would become permanent if negotiations with the EU went ahead.

    He let it be implied that Cyprus can only join the European Union if Turkey joins as well.

    In his statements President Clerides rejected Mr. Denktash's conditions and said "not only do I have no intention of delaying the process (of EU negotiations) but if there is any interference in the process I will not be negotiating."

    He noted that despite his reservations, he stated during the negotiations that he would accept the two documents submitted by Mr. Cordovez and would make his observations on them if the other side did the same.

    "However, the Turkish Cypriot side refused to negotiate, demanding in advance a suspension of the European Union decision for a start to negotiations for Cypriot membership," he added.

    Responding to questions on the prospects for a continuation of the dialogue, the Cypriot president said, "since we resolved on a peaceful solution, we can only find it through talks," also stressing that these will only be effective if the Security Council apportions responsibilities where they really exist.

    He revealed that during the talks, and in response to Turkish Cypriot objections to the planned deployment of Russian S-300 missiles on Cyprus, he proposed discussions on the restriction of armaments and troops, and a program for the demilitarization of the island. Mr. Denktash rejected the proposal, he added.

    Regarding the likely role of US emissary Richard Holbrooke, Mr. Clerides said he had formed the impression that the American official was in agreement with Mr. Cordovez's handling of matters.

    On the whole, the Greek Cypriot side appeared to be considering that it had succeeded in its aim of showing beyond any shadow of a doubt the intransigence of the Turkish side, putting the blame on Mr. Denktash for the deadlock.

    For his part, Mr. Cordovez said he would submit his conclusions on this round of talks to the Security Council next Wednesday. A first round of direct talks (the first between the two leaders since October 1994), was held between July 9 and 12 at the secluded Troutbeck rural retreat, north of New York.

    Before attending the Glion talks the two leaders had two meetings in Cyprus, at the residence of UN Resident Representative, Gustave Feissel, situated in the UN-controlled Nicosia airport area, and discussed humanitarian issues.

    [02] Assumption of the Virgin celebrated throughout Greece

    Athens, 16/08/1997 (ANA)

    Greece yesterday celebrated the holiday of the Assumption of the Virgin in the traditional Orthodox way. Thousands of pilgrims gathered on the Aegean island of Tinos, the center of religious celebrations, where the government was represented by National Defense Minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos. The day also marks Armed Forces Day.

    [03] US says EU must leave door open for Turkish membership

    Washington, 16/08/1997 (ANA/ AFP)

    The European Union must leave the door open for Turkish membership after the failure of the Clerides-Denktash talks in Glion-sur-Montreux, State Department spokesman James Rubin said yesterday.

    Although the official stressed that the decision for the admission of new members belongs to the Union itself, he said that "maintaining the hope of accession -for Cyprus and Turkey- is an encouragement that would improve the chances for settling the Cyprus problem".

    Mr. Rubin described the talks in Switzerland as "useful", and expressed the view that the Cyprus problem will not be solved easily given "the passions and the strong emotions it generates".

    The American official added that further talks of the same type should not be expected before presidential elections in Cyprus in February.

    Questioned on the role of President Bill Clinton's emissary, Richard Holbrooke, Mr. Rubin said that Mr. Holbrooke was having deliberations with European officials and would go to Cyprus in autumn.

    [04] Tsohatzopoulos to visit Czech Republic

    Athens, 16/08/1997 (ANA)

    National Defense Minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos will visit the Czech Republic at the end of autumn on an invitation by his Czech counterpart Miloslav Vyborny.

    Mr. Tsohatzopoulos confirmed his intention to the Czech Republic embassy's military attachi Josef Matejka during a reception last night on the occasion of the Greek Armed Forces Day.

    [05] Respect for international law reiterated on Armed Forces Day

    Athens, 16/08/1997 (ANA)

    The President of the Republic Kostis Stephanopoulos said in a message for the day that the armed forces are "guarantors of our country's security, stability and integrity in the crucial period of varied positive and negative challenges we are going through".

    "Greece, as an equal member of the European Union for a number of years, a country with respect for the principles of international law and international legality, and with a buttressed democratic system, constitutes a factor of stability, security and tranquillity in the broader geographical region".

    Defense Minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos said in a message that the restructuring of the armed forces, the boosting of their operational potential, and the modernization of the means required for the implementation of the country's defense policy are among the measures designed "to secure Greece's deterrent potential against any country that would dare dispute its territorial integrity".

    "The Greek people know the dedication of the armed forces to their task, and shoulder the big sacrifices required for their strengthening with modern equipment," he added.

    After attending celebrations on the island of Tinos yesterday, Mr. Tsohatzopoulos reiterated that "there is nothing for negotiation in the Aegean. There is peace and stability, and there is international law and treaties, which set the non-negotiable character of Greek rights in this region ... Our neighbors on the other side of the Aegean have the obligation to respect international law and treaties".

    Culture Minister Evangelos Venizelos attended events marking the double holiday at the Panagia Soumela monastery on Mt. Vermion in Macedonia, which is a spiritual reference point and symbol for Pontian (Black Sea) Greeks, housing the icon of the Virgin transferred from the original monastery in that region.

    [06] .... Tsohatzopoulos

    Athens, 16/08/1997 (ANA)

    Defense Minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos said yesterday that the situation emerging lately with a minimization of air traffic violations and infringements of Greek air space in the Aegean by Turkish aircraft could continue.

    Responding to a question on the termination by Turkey of the moratorium in the Aegean, during the reception held on Armed Forces Day yesterday, the minister said that on the basis of the emerging situation, discussions could be held with the UN Secretary General on the implementation of the 1988 Papoulias-Yilmaz moratorium.

    "The most recent victims which the Greek and Turkish air forces had, oblige us to consider and approach the terms of peaceful coexistence. If the principles of international law and treaties are accepted by Ankara, they can provide the basis for the resolution of Greek-Turkish problems," Mr. Tsohatzopoulos stressed.

    Commenting on the lack of results from the talks in Montreux, Switzerland, on Cyprus, he said Turkey was facing a dilemma.

    "It will either accept and support a peaceful solution in the framework of the European Union, the UN, and international law -which will open up its European prospects, or it will be considered and be denounced by all international powers as the country which, for its own interest, invades, occupies, and steals 40 per cent of an independent state," he stated.

    [07] Ecumenical Patriarch to visit US

    Istanbul, 16/08/1997 (ANA)

    Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, Vartholomeos I, spiritual leader of the world's 300 million Orthodox Christians, will visit the United States for one month in October, a Patriarchate spokesman told the Athens News Agency on Thursday.

    A program of his visit released to ANA said the Patriarch will begin the tour, his first to the US, on October 19 and return to his See on November 17.

    He will be welcomed on arrival at Andrews Air Force Base by Archbishop Spyridon of America, officials of the Clinton administration, members of the diplomatic corps, Orthodox prelates, senators, congressmen, clergy and laity from throughout the US.

    During his visit, the Patriarch will meet with Orthodox, Catholic, Jewish and Moslem leaders, and hold talks with US President Bill Clinton, UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, and US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.

    One of the highlights of the visit will be his meeting with Cardinal William Keeler as part of efforts to cement relations between the Orthodox and the Roman Catholic Churches, which split in 1054.

    He will also be the first Orthodox Patriarch to officiate at a service in a Catholic church in the US, when he presides over a prayer service at the Basilica of the national Shrine of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary in Baltimore, Maryland on October 2 3.

    Other highlights will be a Patriarchal Divine Liturgy in New York's Madison Square Garden and a prayer service at the Martin Luther King Center for Social Change in Atlanta.

    On the first leg of his tour, in Washington DC, the Patriarch will visit the US Holocaust Memorial Museum and hold talks with Jewish leaders. He will also address the first the First Orthodox-Muslim Dialogue in America at the Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding at Georgetown University.

    Other cities on his itinerary are New Jersey, New York, Boston, Atlanta, Chicago, Des Moines, Dallas, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Florence (Arizona) and Pittsburgh.

    [08] Ecumenical Patriarch due in Chios today

    Athens, 16/08/1997 (ANA)

    Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, Vartholomeos I, arrives on the Aegean island of Chios today for a three-day visit, it was announced yesterday.

    The Patriarch will be the guest of the island's Gum Mastic Growers' Association, who will proclaim him as their honorary president after attending a service at the cathedral of Saints Minas, Victor and Vikentius.

    He will also be offered an amount of locally-produced gum for the preparation of the Holy Oil used by the church in christenings and other consecrations.

    Chios island is famous for its special type of local aromatic gum, known as "masticha" from which they produce, apart from chewing gum, sweets and other confections and a local aperitif under the same name.

    The Patriarch will also tour gum plantations and various churches on the island, and attend holy masses before returning to his See on Tuesday.

    [09] Yugoslav FM talks in Athens 'very constructive and comprehensive'

    Belgrade, 16/08/1997 (ANA - M. Mouratidis)

    Yugoslav Foreign Minister Milan Milutinovic characterized his talks in Athens with Greek counterpart Theodoros Pangalos as "very constructive and comprehensive", according to statements he made to a Serb television station on Thursday.

    Mr. Milutinovic held talks with Mr. Pangalos last Tuesday during a two-day working visit.

    Mr. Milutinovic believes the greatest progress in bilateral relations was made in the economic and investment sector. He also stressed Greece's support for the Yugoslav Federal Republic's return to the international community, particularly the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

    Mention was also made in Athens, he said, of a Balkan summit to be held in November on the island of Crete. Mr. Milutinovic's reference to the summit was interpreted by the Yugoslav press as an indication that Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic was planning to attend. The foreign minister expressed the hope that bilateral trade would increase, as great store is being set by commercial agreements expected to be signed.

    The Yugoslav press on Thursday focused on the announcement of a loan from Greece for the construction of a national highway network from Belgrade to Skopje, capital of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM). The "Nasa Borba" newspaper quoted a US State Department spokesperson's comment that it was up to Greece to make such decisions, which are not governed by the sanctions which the US continues to impose on Belgrade.

    The US is demanding better co-operation from Yugoslavia with regard to the implementation of the Dayton accord and respect for minority rights in Serbia.

    [10] Britain's Princess Diana pays private visit to Greece

    Athens, 16/08/1997 (ANA)

    Britain's Princess Diana arrived in Athens yesterday for a private visit, informed sources said.

    Princess Diana arrived at Athens International Airport at 17h 45 on a private Gulfstream jet, but the purpose of her visit was not immediately known.

    Last September, the princess visited the village of Limni on the island of Evia to attend the funeral of a 27-year-old lawyer, Yannis Kalyviatis, who died of cystic fibrosis.

    The princess had been acquainted with Kalyviatis when he was being treated at a London hospital. Princess Diana visited Kalyviatis in the context of her worldwide humanitarian activities.

    [11] Brazilian IOC member in Athens

    Athens, 16/08/1997 (ANA)

    International Soccer Federation president Joao Havelange arrived in Athens yesterday in his capacity as member of the International Olympic Committee, to be briefed on Athens' candidacy as host city for the 2004 Olympiad.

    He visited the Athens 2004 bid headquarters at the Zappeion Hall for a briefing by committee president Gianna Angelopoulos-Daskalaki. In the early evening Mr. Havelange was to plant an olive tree in the IOC Members' Park.

    On arrival in Athens, Havelange said he was pleased to be in Athens, "the cradle of civilization and athletics".

    Athens is the third candidate city he has visited, after Rome and Buenos Aires.

    Today Mr. Havelange is to visit Athens' Olympic Stadium in Maroussi as well as the Peace and Friendship Stadium in Faliro, before returning to Brazil.

    [12] Turkey ends unilateral confidence-building measures in Aegean

    Ankara, 16/08/1997 (A.A/DPA)

    Turkey will lift today its unilateral confidence-building measures in the Aegean, introduced six weeks ago, Turkish Foreign Ministry deputy spokesman Sermet Atacanli announced yesterday.

    Turkey was declaring "its six-week moratorium at an end as Greece had not taken part in the measures", spokesman Atacanli said in Ankara.

    The measures - whereby Turkey canceled all scheduled air and sea maneuvers in the Aegean from July 1 to August 15 - were part of diplomatic efforts by NATO Secretary General Javier Solana to build confidence between Greece and Turkey.

    Routine training and reconnaissance flights were conducted without weapons as aircraft took off in the direction of the Aegean with NATO electronic recognition codes. Other measures should have included the exchange of information between the two sides.

    [13] President to tour Peloponnese

    Athens, 16/08/1997 (ANA)

    President of the Republic Kostis Stephanopoulos is to visit Messinia on 27 August, according to informed sources. He is also to visit the prefectures of Laconia and Arcadia on 28 and 29 August, respectively.

    [14] Greek ATM network expands with new Alpha Credit Bank terminals

    Athens, 16/08/1997 (ANA)

    Diasnet, an automated teller (ATM) network, has been given a further boost with the connection of 353 ATMs by Alpha Credit Bank.

    The Diasnet network includes National Bank of Greece, Alpha Credit Bank, Ionian Bank, Ergobank, Citibank, Mortgage Bank, Interbank, Eurofinance, ABN Amro, Barclays, Aspis Bank and Dorian Bank. It operates 1700 machines throughout the country.

    [15] Stocks rangebound in scant holiday trade

    Athens, 16/08/1997 (ANA)

    Greek equities moved in a narrow range in the last trading session of a short week on the Athens Stock Exchange on Thursday, with investors more interested in a three-day holiday which started yesterday.

    The general index closed 0.21 percent higher at 1,645.81 points, showing a 0.39 percent gain on the week. Sector indices were mixed. Banks fell 0.17 percent, Leasing eased 0.22 percent, Insurance rose 1.19 percent, Investment increased 0.36 percent, Industrials rose 0.93 percent, Holding was 0.46 percent higher and Miscellaneous fell 0.47 percent.

    The parallel market for smaller companies ended 0.98 percent higher.

    Trading remained thin and turnover was 8.3 billion drachmas. On a weekly basis, average turnover was 9.6 billion down from 10.9 billion drachmas the previous week. Broadly, advancing issues led declining ones by 107 to 93 with another 35 issues unchanged.

    Sportsman, Bank of Athens, Medical Center and Remek scored the biggest percentage gains, while Daring, Eskimo, Demetriades and Ideal suffered the heaviest losses of the day.

    National Bank of Greece closed at 37,630 drachmas, Ergobank at 18,000, Alpha Credit Bank at 20,190, Delta at 4,170, Titan Cement at 15,360, Intracom at 13,400 and OTE at 6,550.

    In the domestic foreign exchange market the US dollar fell substantially against the drachma following a sharp drop in its parity on international markets.

    [16] Bourse likely to rejoin top emerging markets - Salomon

    Athens, 16/08/1997 (ANA)

    Greece's bourse is likely to regain its ranking among the top ten emerging markets despite a summer lull, Salomon Brothers said in a report. The Athens market has held its ground among emerging markets with a 40 percent yield in dollar terms, the international investment house said.

    It said the bourse's current P/E ratio of 12 was high. Low turnover expected in August was likely to rise in coming months, accompanied by a correction in prices.

    End of English language section.

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