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Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 06-11-22

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

From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>

November 22, 2006

CONTENTS

  • [01] Greek and British PMs discuss EU, Turkey, Middle East, Balkans and bilateral relations
  • [02] FM gives interview to RIA-Novosti news agency ahead of Moscow visit
  • [03] Czech President Klaus to begin official visit on Wednesday
  • [04] PM at defense ministry
  • [05] Gov't condemns incident involving college student's roughing up by police
  • [06] PASOK leader Papandreou chairs session of party's Coordinators
  • [07] Agricultural Minister Basiakos replies to PASOK leader Papandreou
  • [08] Papandreou visits Athens-area high school
  • [09] PASOK leader accuses gov't of 'blatant interventions in Justice'
  • [10] PASOK MPs request briefing over proposal to grant citizenship to eligible ethnic Greeks of Albania
  • [11] Deputy FM Kassimis in Canada
  • [12] Air Force General Staff Chief Avlonitis to begin three-day visit to Bulgaria
  • [13] Celebration of Armed Forces Day
  • [14] Joint EU-FYROM Parliamentary Committee president meets FYROM FM
  • [15] Parliament president receives outgoing Lebanese ambassador
  • [16] Lebanese embassy issues announcement over Gemayel assassination
  • [17] EU Agriculture and Fisheries Council reaches compromise solution on fishing in the Mediterranean
  • [18] Development minister in Brussels
  • [19] Deputy FinMin addresses Hellenic American Chamber of Commerce
  • [20] Greek current accounts deficit up 86.4% in Jan-Sept, yr/ry
  • [21] Greek stocks rebound on Tuesday
  • [22] Prosecution for gold wreath sold to Getty Museum
  • [23] Univ. of Crete events in 2007 devoted to Kazantzakis
  • [24] SAE Hellenicare program receives great response from Greeks all over the world
  • [25] Seminar by film directors Wim Wenders and Walter Sales
  • [26] Greek wanted by US for counterfeiting arrested in Cyprus
  • [27] Greek Culture Promotion Organization participates in Cinars cultural network meeting
  • [28] AEK Athens beats AC Milan 1-0 in Champions League match
  • [29] Cypriot government issues statement on Annan's remarks
  • [30] Cypriot FM: Messages not optimistic regarding Turkey's EU obligation

  • [01] Greek and British PMs discuss EU, Turkey, Middle East, Balkans and bilateral relations

    LONDON, 22/11/2006 (ANA-MPA)

    Greece supports Turkey's European orientation but on condition the neighboring country adopts European principles and values and fully implements all criteria and prerequisites set by the EU and honors its commitments, Greek Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis said after talks with British Prime Minister Tony Blair at 10 Downing Street on Tuesday.

    The two premiers discussed Turkey's European prospects, developments in the Middle East, Balkan issues and bilateral relations between the two countries.

    "We support (Turkey's) its European orientation on condition, of course, that it will adopt European values and principles, it will fully implement all criteria and prerequisites set by the European Union and will honor its commitments," the Greek prime minister said.

    Replying to a question on the way with which the EU should react since Turkey, according to statements made on Tuesday by Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul that Turkey does not accept the EU Presidency's December 6 deadline for the implementation of the Ankara Protocol, the British prime minister said "it would not be logical on my part to say what will happen at the summit."

    Blair stressed that discussions will be taking place in coming weeks so that "we can go ahead", adding that "Great Britain and Greece share the strategic vision of Turkey's European accession. It is important for the EU and for the stability of the entire region."

    The British prime minister further said that the terms and preconditions of the EU must be applied, pointing out that a solution must be found for the existing problems.

    "We must create a different atmosphere and a different climate in these negotiations and controversial issues be resolved so that Turkey can also move ahead and the terms of the EU can be implemented," he said.

    Both sides have an identical view of Turkey's European orientation since they prefer a European Turkey and not a Turkey outside Europe. The Greek side, however, stresses that Turkey must fulfill its commitments and there should be strict control.

    Replying to the same question, Karamanlis noted that "on the one hand we support Turkey's European orientation and on the other Turkey has commitments to fulfill and we shall see what will happen. The exact reaction of the EU is a matter of cooperation and common understanding with all the European partners."

    The British prime minister referred in his statements to close cooperation between Greece and Great Britain at all levels, as well as in the economic sector.

    The prime minister noted that productive cooperation exists that covers many sectors and added that "I am convinced that there is a big margin for it to develop even more."

    Extensive reference was made during the talks to economic cooperation that is deepening even more in the sectors of shipping and tourism.

    The issue of Cyprus was also discussed, for which Karamanlis said "we fully support the resumption of the negotiating process, which we believe must take place at the appropriate time and be carefully prepared."

    On the question of the situation prevailing in southeastern Europe, Karamanlis reiterated Greece's support for the European orientation of the countries in the region on condition that they fulfill the criteria and prerequisites of the EU, underlining that "for Greece, stability, security, prosperity and relations of good neighborliness in this region, which is our immediate neighborhood, constitute a strategic goal."

    The talks, attended on the part of Greece by Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis and Minister of State Theodoros Roussopoulos, also focused on issues concerning the EU, such as the European constitution in the direction of undertaking initiatives so that the average European citizen will not feel disappointed.

    [02] FM gives interview to RIA-Novosti news agency ahead of Moscow visit

    ATHENS, 22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis, in light of her official two-day visit to Russia beginning on Wednesday, gave an interview to the Russian RIA-Novosti news agency.

    Bakoyannis said she will have the opportunity of meeting her "counterpart and good friend Sergey Lavrov, Duma Speaker Boris Gryzlov and National Security Council Secretary Igor Ivanov.

    Regarding the agreement on the construction of the Burgas-Alexandroupoli oil pipeline, the Greek foreign minister said that "we all want to see this project going ahead with the fastest rates possible, since it is a project of great importance for all three countries (Greece, Russia and Bulgaria). For this reason our goal is, and we are working in this direction, to have difficulties or obstacles that will possibly arise be overcome quickly and effectively and there be continuous progress for the final implementation of the project."

    Bakoyannis further said that the construction of the Burgas-Alexandroupoli oil pipeline is an issue of extreme importance for Greece since it signals a substantive strategic upgrading of Greece's role.

    "We are aware that energy diplomacy constitutes a sector whose importance is increasing continuously in the modern-day international environment. Our goal is, with our policy and with major projects such as the Burgas-Alexandroupoli oil pipeline, the Greek-Turkish natural gas pipeline and the Greek-Italian undersea gas pipeline, to promote our country to an energy hub both of the region and of Europe. Our close cooperation with Russia has, of course, a focal position in the framework of this policy," she said.

    Focusing on developments in bilateral economic cooperation between Greece and Russia, the Greek foreign minister said "our goal is for our bilateral economic relations to be strengthened even further so that their level will be in line with the high level of our political relations. I believe that the strengthening of the sector of investments on both sides and the greater increase in commercial flows between us, to give you two examples, will contribute considerably to maintaining and increasing the impetus acquired by our economic cooperation."

    Referring to Turkey's European orientation, Bakoyannis said that Greece supports Turkey in its "long and difficult path" to the European Union and pointed out that "for Turkey's European course, however, the preconditions and criteria applying for all countries desiring to become EU members also apply. Turkey has undertaken commitments and obligations towards the 25 member-states which it is called on to observe so that its accession course can continue smoothly. The implementation of the Ankara Protocol holds an important position among them."

    Coming to the issue of Cyprus, the foreign minister said that "it is one of the issues that I will have the opportunity of discussing with Mr. Lavrov during our meeting. Greece continues to remain bent on the target of finding an overall, just and viable solution for the reunification of Cyprus, a solution that will be based on the resolutions of the Security Council and the principles and values of the European Union, of which the Republic of Cyprus is a member. I would like once again, with the opportunity you are giving to me, to express our gratitude to Russia for the steadfast support it is providing in efforts for this goal."

    Lastly, Bakoyannis referred to Russia's relations with the EU and the NATO alliance, saying that "as you are aware, in the framework of both these organizations, Greece steadfastly supports their rapprochement with Russia. As regards the specific issues you refer to, there is a coincidence of views between Greece and Russia, both for the need for a diplomatic solution to the issue of Iran's nuclear program, for which we are also cooperating in the framework of the Security Council and the non-proliferation of nuclear weapons in general. We also share a common interest and views on the peace process in the Middle East and for the wider region of the Balkans and for Kosovo specifically, something that is reflected in relevant consultations between us."

    [03] Czech President Klaus to begin official visit on Wednesday

    ATHENS, 22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    The president of the Czech Republic, Vaclav Klaus, will begin an official two-day visit here on Wednesday at the invitation of his Greek counterpart Karolos Papoulias.

    Both leaders are scheduled to have talks on Wednesday, followed by the signing of a bilateral tourism cooperation agreement by the governments of the two countries.

    Klaus, who will be accompanied by his wife, will later meet with main opposition PASOK president George Papandreou.

    Additionally, the Czech first couple will be the honored guests at an evening reception hosted by Papoulias.

    Klaus will meet with Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis on Thursday, as well as with Interior and Public Administration Minister Prokopis Pavlopoulos.

    [04] PM at defense ministry

    ATHENS, 22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis will arrive at the national defense ministry on Wednesday for a regularly scheduled briefing by the ministry's political and military leadership.

    Environment minister endorses German model of electoral system for Greece (correction, recasting to correct minister's title)

    Environment, town planning and public works minister George Souflias on Tuesday endorsed an immediate amendment of the electoral law, and introduction in Greece of the German elections model, adding his conviction that the ruling New Democracy party (ND) would win the next general elections.

    Replying to press questions on the electoral law, Souflias said that it would be much better for the country if the political leadership realized that the present electoral law needed to be abolished, opining that the current electoral system, with the cross of preference, hindered the political parties from organizing themselves, and was the worst cause of the "pathogeny of our political life".

    He said the German-model mixed electoral system (involving both cross of preference and list) should be applied in Greece, adding that this change should proceed quickly, and the issue of amending the electoral law should be incorporated into the provisions of the Constitution currently under revision.

    "These are my personal views," he stressed, adding that "from there on the government will make its own decisions".

    Souflias explained that he was referring to the essence and structure of the electoral system, and of changes that will alter the political life in Greece.

    [05] Gov't condemns incident involving college student's roughing up by police

    ATHENS, 22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    The government on Tuesday categorically condemned an incident alluding to police brutality last Friday during protests in Thessaloniki to commemorate the 1973 students’ uprising, as televised footage showed individuals later identified as undercover police officers manhandling a young college student.

    “Whatever violent behavior against any individual is condemnable. And I am certain that blame will be placed,” alternate government spokesman Evangelos Antonaros said during his regular press briefing.

    The was later identified as a Cypriot college student studying in Thessaloniki.

    In an unrelated development, Antonaros reiterated that the government has no intention of changing the election law.

    [06] PASOK leader Papandreou chairs session of party's Coordinators

    ATHENS, 22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    Main opposition Panhellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK) leader George Papandreou, speaking at the party's Coordinators' session on Tuesday, accused the government of "attempting to grab the farmers' vote through graft."

    The session centered on the government's agricultural policy and its repercussions to the farmers.

    He accused the government that "it did not attempt to utilize the new Common Agricultural Policies and to readjust Greek agricultural production until 2013." He predicted that "if the same policy continues, then there will be a loss of income for farmers but also a loss in production."

    Regarding the issue of production, the PASOK leader said that "Greece is a blessed country from a climatic view and can produce a lot and good products with great added value."

    Papandreou many times during the session used the term "clientele relations" to describe the government's policy in many sectors.

    [07] Agricultural Minister Basiakos replies to PASOK leader Papandreou

    ATHENS, 22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    Agricultural Development and Foods Minister Evangelos Basiakos, commenting on Tuesday to what main opposition Panhellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK) leader George Papandreou said earlier in the day at the party's session of Coordinators regarding agricultural sector issues, said that "Mr. George Papandreou has to understand reality."

    "The PASOK president should study the data referred in the Community subsidies (this year 503 million euros have been paid compared to 358 million euros last year), the public investments which have doubled in the past two years (from 430 million euros in the two-year period 2002-2003, to 803 million euros in the two-year period 2003-2004) and this year to 500 million euros and the rate of absorption of Community funds (more than 50 per cent), a fact which led the European Union to increase the Community funds by 406 million euros," Basiakos noted.

    [08] Papandreou visits Athens-area high school

    ATHENS, 22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    Main opposition PASOK leader George Papandreou on Tuesday visited a high school in the central Athens district of Kypseli, where he met with pupils and teaching staff.

    In comments to accompanying reporters, Papandreou expressed a view that the government has failed in its education policy, whereas for PASOK it is a "primary issue".

    He also appeared highly critical of the government over a recent incident in Thessaloniki, where television footage showed a college student being roughed up by several individuals later identified as undercover police officers on Friday in the vicinity where protests recorded.

    Papandreou said "several ministers" would have already resigned in other European countries over such an incident.

    The victim was later identified as a Cypriot man studying in Thessaloniki.

    [09] PASOK leader accuses gov't of 'blatant interventions in Justice'

    ATHENS, 22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    Main opposition Panhellenic Socialist Movement (PASOK) leader George Papandreou, speaking on Tuesday at a debate in Parliament on courts, accused the government of "blatant interventions in Justice, in the direction of the consolidation of a climate of partisanship, both in the judicial sector and in society."

    Papandreou claimed that "the talk about elections which returns to the mass media is planned so as to disorientate the citizens from the real question, what the government did with the strong mandate which it already has."

    [10] PASOK MPs request briefing over proposal to grant citizenship to eligible ethnic Greeks of Albania

    ATHENS, 22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    Eighteen main opposition PASOK deputies on Tuesday tabled a request for the convening of Parliament's public administration committee in order to be briefed over the government's initiative to grant citizenship status to eligible members of the ethnic Greek minority of Albania.

    [11] Deputy FM Kassimis in Canada

    OTTAWA, 22/11/2006 (ANA-MPA)

    Greece's deputy foreign minister Theodoros Kassimis, responsible for issues concerning expatriate Greeks, visited the Canadian city of Toronto on Monday, in the context of a tour of North America, and said he was impressed by his contacts with the Greek Canadian community.

    "I was pleasantly surprised here in Canada after ascertaining, at a large Greek Canadian event yesterday, that the Greek community has a very substantial cultural presence here with its impressive dance troupes, the theatrical troupe Nefeli, and the Metropolitan choir. It is very encouraging to see the second and third generations (Greeks in Canada) speaking the Greek language and having a deep sense of identity with their roots," Kassimis told ANA-MPA.

    Kassimis met with regional minister Maria Boudroyannis, who told him that efforts were being made in the regional government to have March declared as "Greece Cultural Month" in Ontario.

    Kassimis further visited the Hellenic Studies department at York University, where he met with students and discussed their problems. The Greek deputy minister assured them that the government would boost the program of visits to Greece while, as of this year, an exchange program would be launched with the University of Athens for research and studies of archives for Greek history studies.

    [12] Air Force General Staff Chief Avlonitis to begin three-day visit to Bulgaria

    SOFIA, 22/11/2006 (ANA-MPA)

    Greece's Air Force General Staff Chief George Avlonitis will begin a three-day visit to Bulgaria on Wednesday at the invitation of his Bulgarian counterpart Simeon Hristov Simeonov.

    The visit was announced by the Bulgarian Defense Ministry's press office on Tuesday.

    Within the framework of the visit, Avlonitis will also visit the air base "Graf Ignatievo", near Plovdiv, which is considered Bulgaria's most modern air base and adjusted to NATO's models.

    [13] Celebration of Armed Forces Day

    ATHENS, 22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    The state honored the permanent members of the armed forces and reservists of all periods on Tuesday on the occasion of the celebration of Armed Forces Day.

    A religious service was held at the Athens Cathedral in the morning and a special event at the Old Parliament building in the afternoon in the presence of President Karolos Papoulias and with professor Manolis Mikroyiannakis being the main speaker.

    The celebration came to an end with a reception given by the leadership of the armed forces in honor of the state and political leadership and foreign political and military authorities.

    [14] Joint EU-FYROM Parliamentary Committee president meets FYROM FM

    BRUSSELS, 22/11/2006 (ANA-MPA)

    The President of the Joint European Union-FYROM Parliamentary Committee George Papastamkos and the Foreign Minister of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) Antonio Milososki met at the European Parliament on Tuesday in the wake of the recent report by the European Commission on the enlargement strategy and FYROM's progress report.

    According to an announcement, Papastamkos and Milososki exchanged views on FYROM's pre-accession course, particularly the need for further reforms in the sectors of public administration, justice, combating corruption and police cooperation.

    Papastamkos assured FYROM's foreign minister that he looks forward to creative and productive cooperation between the members of the European Parliament and the new members of FYROM's Parliamentary delegation regarding relations with the EU with the purpose of speeding up this country's rate of adjustment to the acquis communautaire and the consolidation of a climate of good neighborliness, stability and peaceful coexistence in the region of southeastern Europe.

    [15] Parliament president receives outgoing Lebanese ambassador

    ATHENS, 22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    Parliament President Anna Psarouda-Benaki on Tuesday received Lebanon's outgoing ambassador to Greece, William Habib, the dean of foreign envoys in the country.

    "Lebanon, just as Greece, promotes dialogue and a moderate stance as a vehicle for solving differences," he said during his visit to Parliament.

    On her part, Psarouda-Benaki referred to the very good diplomatic relations between the two countries.

    [16] Lebanese embassy issues announcement over Gemayel assassination

    ATHENS, 22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    The Lebanese embassy announced on Tuesday that, due to the assassination of Lebanon's Industry Minister Pierre Gemayel, a reception due to take place on Wednesday night on the occasion of Lebanon's national holiday has been cancelled.

    "Due to the tragic assassination of the Industry Minister of Lebanon Pierre Gemayel, the embassy of Lebanon in Athens is in the unpleasant position to announce the cancellation of the reception for the National Holiday of Lebanon, that was to take place on Wednesday night November 22 at the residence of the ambassador of Lebanon," the announcement said.

    It added that "a book of condolences will open on Thursday the 23rd and Friday the 24th of November at the embassy of Lebanon, from 10.00 a.m. to 14.00 p.m."

    [17] EU Agriculture and Fisheries Council reaches compromise solution on fishing in the Mediterranean

    BRUSSELS, 22/11/2006 (ANA-MPA)

    After a two-day marathon of consultations in Brussels, the EU Agriculture and Fisheries Council on Tuesday reached a compromise agreement regarding the new Community Regulation for fishing in the Mediterranean.

    Greece was represented by Agricultural Development and Foods Minister Evangelos Basiakos.

    The compromise agreement was termed as "balanced" by EU presiding Agriculture and Fisheries Minister Juha Korkeaoja, who stressed that on the one side, fishing will be reduced, a necessary prerequisite for the protection of a number of types of fishes which have significantly been reduced, while on the other hand, the interests of European fishing are protected to a great degree.

    Basiakos stated that he was satisfied, because, as he underlined, "after persistent and tough negotiations, particularly favorable settlements for Greek fishermen were secured, in relation to the proposal of the Presidency and of the Commission."

    [18] Development minister in Brussels

    22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    Development minister Dimitris Sioufas leaves on Wednesday for Brussels, where he will represent Greece at Thursday's meeting of the Council of EU Energy Ministers.

    The main item on the agenda is EU energy policy, and the ministers are expected to adopt conclusions concerning a European Commission action plan on energy yield, as well as discuss international relations in the energy sector, particularly EU energy relations with Russia, the Energy Community Treaty, and the Energy Charter.

    Sioufas will have sidelines meetings with EU energy Commissioner Andris Piebalgs, and Greece's Commissioner Stavros Dimas, while he will also visit the Brussels-based Rene wable Energy House, which was inaugurated on March 22 this year.

    [19] Deputy FinMin addresses Hellenic American Chamber of Commerce

    ATHENS, 22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    Deputy Finance and Economy Minister Antonis Bezas, addressing the Hellenic American Chamber of Commerce, said on Tuesday that "as far as the finance ministry is concerned, the best state is that which handles public finances in a more effective way."

    The deputy finance minister said the most important initiatives "for a better state" are transparency in tax checks, the introduction of new electronic services to improve productivity and save time for businesses and citizens and a decrease in direct tax burdens for businesses and citizens with the intensification of the effort to crack down on tax evasion and smuggling.

    Bezas termed tax evasion one of the biggest problems of the Greek economy and said the ministry places particular importance on combating it, utilizing possibilities provided by the use of new technologies.

    [20] Greek current accounts deficit up 86.4% in Jan-Sept, yr/ry

    ATHENS, 22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    Greece's current accounts deficit jumped 86.4 pct in the January-September period to 16.036 billion euros (or 8.3 pct of the country's GDP), compared with the same period last year, the Bank of Greece said on Tuesday.

    The central bank, in its monthly report, said that foreign direct investments more than doubled over the same period to 3.7 billion euros.

    The Bank of Greece attributed the widening of the current accounts deficit to a 48 percent jump in fuel spending and a 30 percent increase in the trade deficit, while higher interest payments, lower revenues from the transport sector -after a surge in 2004 and 2005- and higher spending on new vessels also contributed in the widening of the deficit.

    The trade deficit rose by 6.027 billion euros in the January-September period reflecting a 2.323 billion euros increase in net payments on new vessels, a 2.074 billion euros increase in net payments on fuel imports and a 1.63 billion euros increase in the trade deficit excluding fuel and vessels.

    The central bank noted that proceeds from the export of goods rose 12.1 percent or 916 million euros, while payments on imports of goods rose 11.1 percent to 2.5 billion euros.

    The services' surplus fell by 107 million euros while net payments on other services rose by 351 million euros in the nine-month period. Net revenues from travel services rose by 728 million euros, while the incomes' shortfall grew by 1.2 billion euros due to higher net payments on interest, dividends and earnings. The capital transfer surplus rose by 52.7 percent due to higher inflows from the EU.

    The financial services category showed a net inflow of 888 million euros in direct investments, after a net outflow of 635 million euros in the January-September period last year. The portfolio investment category recorded a net inflow of 5.647 billion euros.

    The country's foreign exchange reserved totaled 2.2 billion euros at the end of September.

    [21] Greek stocks rebound on Tuesday

    ATHENS, 22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    Greek stocks rebounded on Tuesday after Monday's sell-off pushed the composite index of the Athens Stock Exchange above the 4,300 level again.

    The index ended 0.83 pct higher at 4,306.97 points with turnover a moderate 286 million euros.

    Sector indices ended higher with the Telecoms (1.80 pct), Banks (1.51 pct) and Insurance (0.95 pct) scoring the biggest percentage gains of the day. On the other hand, the Utilities (1.67 pct), Industrial Products (0.13 pct) and Healthcare (0.12 pct) suffered the biggest losses.

    The Big Cap index rose 1.06 pct, the Mid Cap index ended 1.15 pct higher and the Small Cap index rose 0.30 percent.

    Maxim-Pertsinidis (20 pct), Tsoukaridis (17.65 pct), Galis (14 pct) were top gainers while Ippotour (8.86 pct), Texapret (7.41 pct) and Gener (5.56 pct) top losers.

    Broadly, advancers led decliners by 152 to 98 with another 60 issues unchanged.

    Foreign Exchange Rates - Wednesday

    Reference buying rates per euro released by the European Central Bank:

    U.S. dollar 1.291

    [22] Prosecution for gold wreath sold to Getty Museum

    ATHENS, 22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    Criminal charges for embezzlement, accepting and selling the products of a crime have been filed against two Greeks and two foreigners who, according to the police, are involved in the sale of an ancient gold wreath to the private Getty Museum in the United States.

    Investigations revealed that the gold wreath was the result of illegal excavations in Macedonia, northern Greece, and had been purchased by the museum in July 1993 for 1,150,000 U.S. dollars.

    The persons being accused, including the two Greeks who are permanent residents of Germany, reportedly took the gold wreath abroad with them.

    Greece demands the return of the gold wreath.

    [23] Univ. of Crete events in 2007 devoted to Kazantzakis

    22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    The University of Crete is planning a series of events for 2007 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the death of influential Cretan writer Nikos Kazantzakis, with a special faculty to be established at the institution devoted to the study of the prolific author's works.

    An international conference will also be convened on the island in late May 2007.

    [24] SAE Hellenicare program receives great response from Greeks all over the world

    22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    Over 600,000 euros have been collected to support the Council of Hellenes Abroad (SAE) Hellenicare Program, through the Telemarathon organized by SAE in cooperation with the Hellenic Broadcasting Corporation SA (EPT) on November 18-20.

    SAE President and Hellenicare founder Andreas A. Athens expressed in a statement his satisfaction over the great response of Greeks from all over the world and the sensitivity they showed to support Greek communities in Black Sea countries and in Albania, who enjoy the free services provided by the program.

    Athens said that the slogan "Greeks exist-Hope exists" was not selected by chance for the Telemarathon, pointing out that "once again the Greeks showed their sensitivity and solidarity for our brothers who need our help, recognizing in this way one's right to be able to live with dignity."

    [25] Seminar by film directors Wim Wenders and Walter Sales

    22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    "On the Road" was the issue of a seminar on Tuesday which was given by film directors Wim Wenders and Walter Sales, within the framework of the 47th Thessaloniki Film Festival.

    Wim Wenders, is famous for his films "Paris-Texas" and "Wings of Love", while Brazilian film director Walter Sales is known for his film "Motorcycle Diaries".

    "It is very nice to be at home, but it is even better to be outside, to travel, to seek the unknown. Homer's 'Odyssey' could be the precursor of 'road movies'", said Wim Wenders.

    Referring to the new film he is preparing entitled "On the Road", Walter Sales said it was about the era of Macartheism in the 1950s, noting:"This era of compromise, of conformity, reminds us intensely of our own era. The fear that prevailed then is the same fear of the Bush era."

    [26] Greek wanted by US for counterfeiting arrested in Cyprus

    NICOSIA, 22/11/2006 (ANA-MPA)

    The Cyprus police has arrested a Greek citizen wanted by the US authorities on counterfeiting charges, and has placed him on a 6-day detention via a court ruling, it was announced on Tuesday.

    The man, identified as Loukas Kakogeorgiou, 37. Police said several forged papers and many stolen items were found in the detainee’s car and in his home in Limassol.

    Cyprus justice minister Sophocles Sofokleous described the case as "very serious", adding that all possibilities were being examined in the process of the investigation, and all evidence was being assessed.

    He also confirmed that the detainee had a diplomatic passport in his possession, in the name of an American diplomat, with a 2008 expiration date, but declined to give further details.

    [27] Greek Culture Promotion Organization participates in Cinars cultural network meeting

    MONTREAL, 22/11/2006 (ANA-MPA)

    The Greek Culture Promotion Organization (OPEP) had a dynamic participation in meetings between international cultural networks at the arts market Cinars 2006 (International Conference for the Performing Arts), held here between November 14-18 and at which cultural directors of agencies and organizations, as well as producers from many countries were present.

    OPEP participated in Cinars 2006 with a pavilion which attracted a large number of visitors interested in being informed both of the activities of the organization and Greece's modern artistic creation in the theatre, music and dancing.

    OPEP is an SA company that is supervised by the culture ministry and has been operating since 21000 with the purpose of highlighting and promoting the country's cultural heritage and modern cultural potential.

    Soccer

    [28] AEK Athens beats AC Milan 1-0 in Champions League match

    22/11/2006 (ANA/MPA)

    AEK Athens beat AC Milan of Italy 1-0 (halftime 1-0) in a Champions League Group H soccer match played at the Olympic Stadium in Athens on Tuesday night.

    AEK's goal was scored by Julio Cesar in the 32nd minute.

    [29] Cypriot government issues statement on Annan's remarks

    NICOSIA, 22/11/2006 (CNA/ANA-MPA)

    The Cypriot government, through its Spokesman, said here Tuesday it agrees with the UN Secretary-General's statement who called on both parties on the island to work very closely with his representative in Nicosia and to see actions from both sides narrowing the gap between words and deeds.

    In a statement, Undersecretary to the President and Government Spokesman Christodoulos Pashiardis said the Cypriot government wanted to make remarks on several issues regarding Monday's statements by UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan after his meeting in Geneva with Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat.

    "The fact that Cyprus' reunification was not possible, through the Annan Plan, was because this specific plan, as it was, did not secure the reunification of the people and the country, but merely imposed a loose attachment of two separate entities, perpetuating the partitionist elements and prejudging the creation of a deadlock and the malfunction of the state. For this reason, and others of course, it (the plan) was rejected by the majority of Greek Cypriots", the spokesman said.

    He said that the acceptance of the plan by the Turkish Cypriots "was not a concession for which the Turkish side should be rewarded for,

    bearing in mind that both Turkey and the Turkish Cypriots had secured everything they were asking for in the Annan Plan. In addition, the plan was not the result of negotiations but a decision of 'arbitration' by the Secretary-General".

    Regarding the lifting of the so-called isolation of the Turkish Cypriots "for which there is so much talk and which the Secretary- General refers to in his statements, it is now clear that this myth is merely a pseudonym of the organized effort and pursuit of the Turkish side to politically upgrade the pseudostate which, as the Secretary-General knows very well, the Security Council with its resolutions 541 and 550, considers illegal and a product of an illegal secessionist act''.

    ''This alleged 'isolation' is mainly self-imposed by the efforts of the pseudostate to secure political upgrading or indirect recognition and participation in international organizations", the spokesman remarked.

    Commenting on the position set out by the Secretary-General for granting assistance to satisfy aspirations of the illegal state for economic development, Pashiardes noted that "surely this help cannot be connected with the legalization of the systematic exploitation of Greek Cypriot property in the occupied areas, nor with the issue of direct trade, which is connected with the return of Varosha town to its lawful inhabitants''.

    ''This return, as the Secretary-General again very well knows, is provided for by the relevant Security Council resolutions which the legal government of Cyprus fully respects", he pointed out.

    On the issue of the implementation of the 8 July Agreement, "we fully agree with the Secretary-General that declarations of intent are not

    sufficient, but what is needed is action. Our side remains consistent towards this agreement and will continue to work and cooperate with all the good will and every constructive way, to promote its full implementation", the spokesman concluded.

    EU member-state Cyprus, has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops invaded and occupied its northern third.

    In April 2004 a UN-envisaged plan for a comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem was approved by the Turkish Cypriot community but ejected by the Greek Cypriots who deemed that it did not lead to the real reunification of the island.

    Cypriot President Tassos Papadopoulos and Talat agreed on July 8, 2006, during a meeting in the presence of UN Undersecretary General for political affairs Ibrahim Gambari, to begin a process of bicommunal discussions on issues that affect the day-to-day life of the people and concurrently those that concern substantive issues, both contributing to a comprehensive settlement to the Cyprus problem.

    [30] Cypriot FM: Messages not optimistic regarding Turkey's EU obligation

    NICOSIA, 22/11/2006 (CNA/ANA-MPA)

    The messages the Republic of Cyprus receives from its EU partners and the current EU rotating presidency are not

    optimistic as regards Turkey's obligation to open until the beginning of December its ports and airports to Cyprus, and thus implement the EU- Turkey Customs Union protocol, said here Tuesday Minister of Foreign Affairs George Lillikas.

    "It seems that the messages we get from the EU presidency and our EU partners who are in contact with Ankara, are not optimistic", he said, replying to questions.

    Lillikas also expressed the view that third countries will exert pressure on EU member states regarding the stance these countries will adopt on Turkey's issue, if Ankara fails to meet its EU obligations.

    The minister was also invited to comment on statements made by Finnish Premier Matti Vanhanen that Turkey would face consequences if until the beginning of December it does not open its ports and airports to the Republic of Cyprus.

    Lillikas said that Vanhanen's statements reflect the decision which was unanimously taken by the EU on September 21, known as the Union's

    counterdeclaration to Turkey's unilateral declaration that the signing of the Ankara Protocol in July 2005 does not imply recognition of the Republic of Cyprus.

    "The reference that Turkey's refusal to meet its obligations will affect its overall accession course, has been included in the European Commission's progress report on Turkey as well", he noted.

    Lillikas said that the kind of sanctions that will be imposed on Turkey will be discussed during the negotiations within the EU institutions between December 6-12.

    "Now, what sort of sanctions and to what extent these sanctions will really reflect the importance that a candidate country fulfills its obligations, this issue will be the focus of negotiations that will start on December 6 when the European Commission will submit its recommendations, until December 11-12 when the General Affairs and External Relations Council will convene", he said.

    Lillikas said that the Republic of Cyprus has already put much hope and effort in the Finnish proposals, hoping that it will bear fruit.

    "We have cooperated constructively with the Finnish EU presidency. We knew of course that the success of this effort would help Turkey implement its EU obligations. It would also create a better political environment in Cyprus and maybe enforce even more the optimism for a comprehensive solution of the Cyprus problem and the reunification of our homeland".

    He added "it seems though that the messages we get from the EU presidency and our EU partners who are in contact with Ankara, are not optimistic".

    He expressed the view that it is soon to prejudge the EU-25 stance, in the case the Finnish initiative fails.

    Lillikas said that within the EU there are different schools of thought as to the Union's decision regarding its position on Turkey.

    "There are and there will be interventions from outside exerted upon the EU member states. There are also different approaches and national interests of each European state. In this, quite complicated environment, we will give a struggle, and hopefully it will bear good results", he concluded.

    EU member state Cyprus, has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops invaded and occupied its northern third. Turkey, a country aspiring to enter the EU refuses to recognize the Republic of Cyprus and to open its ports and airports to Cyprus (Customs Union Protocol), a precondition for EU membership.

    The Finnish EU presidency has given Turkey time until the sixth of December to implement the Customs Union Protocol or face sanctions during the EU Council in December.


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