|Wednesday, 8 July 2020|
Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 07-09-18
From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>Tuesday, 18 September 2007 Issue No: 2700
 Government re-elected in Sunday's elections, PM reaffirms commitment for reformsThe ruling New Democracy (ND) party and prime minister Costas Karamanlis were easily re-elected to government in Sunday's general elections in Greece, while the main opposition PASOK party posted a slump and the two Left parties -- the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) and the Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) posted a strong showing, nearly doubling their parliamentary seats, and the Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS) became the newcomer to the first-ever five-party parliament. Premier Karamanlis again raised his party's banner of reforms, speaking to the nation in a televised statement in downtown Athens after ND clinched its re-election, saying that the outcome of the vote was a clear mandate by the people for his government to carry on with its reforms and changes.
The ruling New Democracy (ND) party and prime minister Costas Karamanlis were easily re-elected in Sunday's general elections throughout Greece, posting 41.9 percent of the vote -- with 98.7 percent of results tallied at 8:56 a.m. Monday -- and a slim but working majority of 152 seats in the 300-member unicameral parliament. Main opposition PASOK party slumped to 38.1 percent and 102 seats, while the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) amassed 8.1 percent and the Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) 5.0 percent, both nearly doubling their parliamentary showing with 22 seats for KKE and 14 for SYRIZA. Sunday's elections also produced a newcomer to parliament, which comprises five political parties for the first time, as the Popular Orthodox Rally (LAOS) party garnered 3.8 percent of the vote and 10 seats.
The total number of registered voters was 9,845,662 and voter turnout was 74.12 percent (7,298,088), with abstention at 25.88 percent. Of the votes cast, 96 percent were valid (7,103,645), 2 percent were invalid (147,298), and 2 percent were blank (47,145).
 Final tally gives ND 152 seats in Parliament; 102 for PASOKRuling New Democracy (ND) party and prime minister Costas Karamanlis were more-or-less easily re-elected in Sunday's general elections in Greece, garnering 41.84 percent of the vote -- with 99.75 percent of results tallied by Monday afternoon -- and a slim but working majority of 152 seats in the 300-MP unicameral Parliament.
The main opposition PASOK party slumped to 38.10 percent and 102 seats, while the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) amassed 8.15 percent and the Radical Left Coalition (SYRIZA) picked up 5.04 percent, both nearly doubling their election showing with 22 seats for KKE and 14 for SYRIZA - the grouping led by the better known Coalition of the Left (Synaspismos). Sunday's elections also produced a newcomer to Parliament, which will again field five political parties in the legislature, as the Popular Orthodox Rally (LA.OS) party gained 3.8 percent of the vote and 10 seats. A 3-percent or more showing is necessary for entry into Parliament under Greece's election law.
The total number of registered voters was 9,908,274 as voter turnout hovered at around 74 to 75 percent. Of the votes cast, 96 percent were valid (7,103,645), 2 percent were invalid (147,298), and 2 percent were blank (47,145).
Ruling ND dropped 3.52 percentage points from its landslide figure of 45.36 percent in the previous March 7, 2004 election, where it picked up 165 seats in the 300-MP legislature.
Main opposition PASOK, however, also lost ground, failing to capitalise on the government's political attrition due to the wildfires in the Peloponnese late last month as well as a simmering furor over questionable bond purchases by state-run pension funds. PASOK lost 2.45 percentage points from its 40.55-percent figure in 2004, which then translated into in 117 Parliament seats.
Beyond ND and Karamanlis, the smaller parties - two leftist and a rightist-populist formation - were the big winners of the night. Specifically, KKE picked up 2.25 percentage points from 5.9 percent in 2004. On its part, SYRIZA significantly increased its tally from 2004, adding 1.78 percentage points to its 3.26-percent figure of the previous election.
The minor surprise, moreover, was the LA.OS party's entry into Parliament with 3.79 percent.
A handful of surprises were also recorded in the country's largest voting precincts in terms of specific candidates, although the favorites mostly retained their standing.
Specifically, on the New Democracy side, Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis appeared to lead all other candidates in Athens' first election district, polling in more than 50,000 votes. She was followed by Health Minister and former Athens mayor Dimitris Avramopoulos, Economy Minister George Alogoskoufis, Interior Minister Prokopis Pavlopoulos and Culture Minister George Voulgarakis. Parliament President Anna Psarouda-Benaki managed to gain her re-election in the district as well, whereas Education Minister Marietta Yiannakou failed to enter Parliament.
On the PASOK side, former minister Costas Skandalidis and former EU Commissioner Anna Diamantopoulou led PASOK's candidates in voters' preference.
In Athens' second election district, the country's largest, Defence Minister Evangelos Meimarakis and deputy Kyriakos Mitsotakis, the son of former prime minister Constantine Mitsotakis and the brother of FM Bakoyannis, led the ND field, while Deputy Minister Gerassimos Yiakoumatos, Transport Minister Mihalis Liapis, Public Order Minister Vyron Polydoras, ND secretary Lefteris Zagoritis and Deputy Ministers Theodoros Kassimis and Yiannis Papathanasiou were re-elected.
On PASOK's side, Andreas Loverdos led the pack, while one surprise was former minister and former labour leader Christos Protopapas' failure to enter Parliament. Former economy minister Nikos Christodoulakis and long-time PASOK cadre and minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos were also not re-elected.
KKE leader Aleka Papariga and LA.OS president George Karatzaferis were also elected in Athens' second election district, while SYRIZA head Alekos Alavanos took the party's only seat in Irakleio prefecture of Crete, a more-or-less pre-election wager that paid off for the leftist leader.
 Psarouda-Benaki informs President on election resultsThe president of the outgoing Parliament Anna Psarouda-Benaki on Monday informed President of the Republic Karolos Papoulias about the results of Sunday's general elections in Greece and the number of seats won by each party in the next Parliament.
According to Psarouda-Benaki, the distribution of seats among the five parties that will be represented in Parliament are the following:
New Democracy - 152 deputies
PASOK - 102 deputies
Communist Party of Greece (KKE) - 22 deputies
Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) - 14 deputies
Popular Orthodox Rally (LA.OS) - 10 deputies
Psarouda-Benaki informed the President that the new members of Parliament will be sworn in on September 26 and that a new Parliament presidency will be elected on the following day, September 27. The next Parliament President will be elected by secret ballot by an absolute majority of all the MPs.
From September 28-30, Parliament will debate the new government's programme statements and the discussion will end with a vote of confidence in the government.
 PASOK cadres comment on party's election performanceFormer main opposition PASOK Parliamentary representative Haris Kastanidis, commenting Monday on his party's performance in Sunday's general elections in the country, said that "the message from the elections was clear:A new hopeful and victorious movement requires deep changes. PASOK President George Papandreou has requested that he be given clear confirmation to proceed with necessary and deep changes. The cadres must help him in this direction."
PASOK leader Papandreou had announced in the early hours of Monday his intention to ask party members to renew their confidence to his person in order, as he said, to proceed with major changes within the party, hours after PASOK came in a disappointing second to ruling New Democracy, while top party cadre Evangelos Venizelos declared that he was "present" in procedures to resolve the issue of PASOK's defeat.
PASOK's former National Council secretary Mariliza Xenoyiannakopoulou said earlier that "I always stand by George Papandreou," adding that "we must all guarantee the unity and prospects of PASOK and of the democratic party with a feeling of responsibility."
Former Parliamentary Group secretary Dimitris Reppas said on his part that "I remain at the president's side, (former prime minister) Costas Simitis will be written in history with gold letters, the decision will be taken by the social base."
Political Council member Vasso Papandreou called for the immediate convening of the party's Political and National Council, stressing that "it is absolutely necessary that we agree, not only on the persons, but mainly on the political terms for PASOK's new course," expressing speedy and substantive democratic procedures that will "guarantee the unity and future of the party."
Costas Skandalidis called for the immediate convening of the Political Council under the chairmanship of leader Papandreou, proposing that "the election of the president take place under the supervision and control of the former prime minister (Simitis) and of all who have served as party secretaries until now."
Political Council member Nikos Bistis said in a written statement that "a blank cheque is not needed now, but a binding mandate. I hope that Mr. Venizelos will be able to meet the requirements of the times."
 PASOK: Venizelos-Simitis meeting, statementsMain opposition PASOK party senior MP Evangelos Venizelos on Monday met with Costas Simitis, a former party leader and prime minister, whom he said afterwards was a "guarantor of PASOK's unity".
Venizelos also endorsed speedy procedures for "resolving the issue" that has arisen in PASOK following its defeat in Sunday's general elections, "in order to exercise effective opposition" to the re-elected government of New Democracy.
Venizelos, who early Monday intimated at his candidacy for the party leadership following the election results, also said that his actions "are not individual ones, but express a trend of ideas", and ruled out the prospect of break-up of the main opposition party.
He said that current PASOK leader George Papandreou, with whom he said he had not yet been in contact with since the elections, "will always have a distinguished and top role in PASOK".
In a written statement earlier, Simitis described PASOK's electoral defeat as "painful", stressing that the top priority was the party's unity and its speedy restructuring "in order to ensure success in the next showdown" which, he predicted "could possibly come very quickly".
The former prime minister also endorsed the immediate commencement of the party's democratic procedures as the only means of "avoiding a long-term crisis", adding that PASOK and its supporters and officials must carefully examine the causes of the defeat.
Arriving at Simitis' office for their meeting later, Venizelos said that "the morning after finds PASOK defeated but not humbled", adding that the party was "liberated, united and with prospects".
 Top PASOK cadre Diamantopoulou asks for change in party leadershipAnna Diamantopoulou, a top main opposition PASOK cadre, asked for a change in the party's leadership while speaking on a private TV channel on Monday evening.
"We must proceed to a new period, we must change leadership because we must discuss mainly on programmes, positions. There must be a political confrontation within the party," Diamantopoulou said.
Main opposition PASOK President George Papandreou announced in the early hours of Monday his intention to ask party members to renew their confidence to his person in order, as he said, to proceed with major changes within the party, hours after PASOK came in a disappointing second to ruling New Democracy, while top party cadre Evangelos Venizelos declared that he was "present" in procedures to resolve the issue of PASOK's defeat.
Diamantopoulou also said she would be "present" in view of developments in the main opposition party.
 KKE Central Committee pleased with election resultsThe Central Committee of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) convened on Monday to make an initial assessment of the results of Sunday's general elections and stressed its pleasure with the results in an announcement issued afterwards.
The Central Committee pointed out that KKE's election percentage (8.2 percent) is the biggest since 1993 and is combined with the losses sustained by the PASOK and New Democracy parties.
KKE added that it feels committed to responding to the expectations of all who showed trust in the party for the first time, including a considerable number of young people.
It further said that it will pursue a meeting with them to strengthen its bonds in the field of struggles, political action and dialogue for an alternative solution for authority.
 SYRIZA promises greater cooperation with Left, green movementsThe Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) on Monday said that it intended to work for broader cooperation with the socialist and green movements in the country and to "seek a way out for the hopes of workers and young people seeking an alternative solution in a radical united Left".
SYRIZA spokesman Alexis Tsipras made the statement after a celebratory meeting of the party's Political Secretariat to discuss the election result.
According to Tsipras, political developments will henceforth be sealed by the momentum of social movements, the momentum of the youth movement but also the strong presence of the radical Left in Parliament.
He thanked the voters that placed their trust in SYRIZA and called on them to "meet in places of work, in neighbourhoods, in schools and colleges to fight together for all the things we deserve".
The substantial increase in votes for SYRIZA were "only the start of a hopeful course toward a future with dignity," Tsipras added.
 U.S. State Department congratulates PM Karamanlis on election victoryWASHINGTON (ANA-MPA/T.Ellis)
The State Department extended on Monday the U.S. government's congratilations to Greek Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis for his party's victory in Sunday's general elections.
"We congratulate Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis on the victory of his party in the elections. We look farward to working with his government," State Department Spokesman Sean McCormack said.
McCormack also expressed certainty that the two countries' foreign ministers will be meeting next week in New York, on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.
"I'm sure she (Secretary of State Contoleezza Rice) will see her Greek counterpart in New York and offer her hearty congratulations in person," McCormack said.
 EPP Parliamentary group chief welcomes ND re-electionBRUSSELS (ANA-MPA - V. Demiris)
The head of the European People's Party (EPP) group in the European Parliament Joseph Daul on Monday said that centre-right New Democracy's re-election during Sunday's polls in Greece was "good news for Greece and for Europe".
In a statement, Daul said that ND's victory was a personal success for Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis, ND but also the EPP and he underlined that it had been won in difficult conditions given the recent devastating fires in the country.
Daul repeated the EPP's commitment to back substantial support from the EU toward Greece and said that under Karamanlis' leadership, "Greece will continue to be in good hands" when it came to face major European challenges.
 Austrian vice-chancellor congratulates Karamanlis on re-electionVIENNA (ANA-MPA - D. Dimitrakoudis)
Austria's Vice Chancellor Wilhelm Molterer, also finance minister for Austria and the head of the Austrian People's Party, in statements on Monday congratulated Greek Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis on the ruling New Democracy party's victory during Sunday's general elections.
Molterer congratulated Karamanlis on "the trust the Greek people have shown in him for the good work that the Greek prime minister and his team have offered Greece in the past years".
According to the Austrian politician, this victory was even greater given the very difficult circumstances in which it had been achieved, immediately after the devastating fires that had swept Greece.
Molterer stressed the support and solidarity that Austria and other member-states of the European Union showed Greece during the fires crisis, noting that this assistance was an important indicator of European solidarity in cases of natural disasters.
 Albanian premier congratulates Karamanlis on election victoryTIRANA (ANA-MPA - O. Karvouniaris)
Albanian Prime Minister Sali Berisha on Monday announced that he had conveyed his congratulations to Greek Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis on his party's election victory during Sunday's polls in Greece.
According to the announcement, Berisha called Karamanlis on the phone on Sunday night, shortly after the results of the election became apparent, and the two men expressed their desire to increase cooperation between Greece and Albania.
 FYROM reactions to Greek general electionsSKOPJE (ANA-MPA/N. Frangopoulos)
Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) President Branko Crvenkovski stated on Monday that he does not expect any change of policy on the part of Greece regarding the FYROM name issue, after Sunday's general elections in Greece.
Asked to evaluate how relations between FYROM and Greece will develop, as well as on the name issue, Crvenkovski said:
"Initially, I wish to congratulate the prime minister of Greece, Costas Karamanlis, for his party's victory in yesterday's elections. I hope that the new government as well under his leadership, will show willingness for the growth of good relations between the two countries. On our part, this willingness exists and will continue to exist. Regarding the name issue, I believe that that there will be no spectacular change in the policy of the new Greek government on this matter. However, time will show if my assessment is confirmed or denied. There will be no spectacular changes on the name issue either from our side. Our postions on the pending name issue are quite well known."
 Head of Cyprus' DISY party congratulates KaramanlisThe president of Cyprus' Democratic Rally (DISY) party on Monday sent a letter of congratulations to Greek Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis for New Democracy's victory during Sunday's general elections in Greece.
Noting that ND and DISY both belonged to the same region of the political spectrum and were both party of the European People's Party, DISY spokesman Haris Georgiades conveyed the party's wishes for a "creative and successful governance".
Karamanlis was also sent a congratulatory telegram by Cypriot presidential candidate Ioannis Cassoulides, who noted that a majority government in Greece was beneficial for both the Greek people and for Cyprus, which looked to Greece to have an even more powerful presence on the international scene and within the European Union.
 Archbishop Christodoulos congratulates PM Costas KaramanlisArchbishop of Athens and All Greece Christodoulos addressed a letter to Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis from Miami, congratulating him on his re-election to the post in Sunday's general elections.
"In these great moments for your personal life and for our sweet homeland, being physically far away but close to you in spirit, I shake hands with you warmly and from the depths of my heart I let my wholehearted congratulations come to my lips," the Archbishop said in his letter.
"The Church that you respect and love, like a caring Mother, embraces and honours you through me, its Primate, it blesses you and it prays ardently to its Lord for excellent success in your work with wonderful results in all sectors, for the benefit of Orthodoxy and of Hellenism in our blessed country," he added.
The Archbishop is staying in Miami, where he will be undergoing a liver transplant.
 New Athens-Piraeus Supra-Prefect electedDina Bei was elected on Monday as new Athens-Piraeus Supra-Prefect, following a vote by the main opposition PASOK majority in the Prefectural Council .
After the resignation of Fofi Gennimata and in accordance with the provisions, the majority party in the Prefectural Council proclaimed Bei, who was the only candidate, as new Athens-Piraeus Supra-Prefect. Out of 45 counselors who voted, she garnered 41 votes, four were blanks and one absentee.
Bei was previously Vice-Supra Prefect, responsible for administrative and economic issues.
She has been in local government since 1994 and has studied law in Athens and international relations at Manchester University. She is the wife of former Athens mayor Dimitris Beis.
 Marfin Investment Group raises stake in OTE to 10.7687 pctMarfin Investment Group on Monday announced it has raised its equity stake in Hellenic Telecommunications Organisation (OTE) to 10.7687 percent, with voting rights.
A company statement said 6.3266 percent, or 31,009,757 shares were directly owned by MIG, while another 4.4421 percent, or 21,772,970 shares are part of a total return equity swap deal.
 Share capital increase completed at EurobankThe share capital increase has been successfully completed at Eurobank with the payment of cash and the right of preference in favour of the old shareholders, with a ratio of two new shares for every 15 old ones and a sale price of 20 euros per share.
The total amount of capital to be accumulated by the increase in share capital totals about 1,229 million euros.
A total of 61,444,496 new shares will be issued in the framework of the increase, having a nominal value of 2,75 euros and a sale price of 20 euros per share and for which about 97.47 percent of the shareholders have registered.
A relevant announcement said that the Group will be able to speed up organic development rates and will continue to expand its activities, both in countries in which it is already present and in new ones where interesting prospects and opportunities exist for the development of fiscal activities.
 Greek trade deficit widens to 19 bln euros in Jan-JulyBRUSSELS (ANA-MPA)
Greece's trade deficit widened to 19 billion euros in the first seven months of the year, up 1.9 billion euros from the same period in 2006, Eurostat said on Monday. The EU executive's statistics arm, in its monthly report, said that Greek exports totaled 8.6 billion euros in the January-July period, while imports totaled 27.6 billion euros over the same period, with the trade deficit rising from 17.1 billion to 19 billion euros. Compared with the same period last year, Greek exports grew by 7.0 percent, while imports rose 10 percent.
Eurostat said Germany recorded the biggest trade surplus in the EU-27 (97 billion euros) followed by Holland (20.6 billion euros), Ireland (15.6 bln) and Sweden (8.5 bln). The UK (65.4 billion euros), Spain (44.9 bln), France (19.3 bln) and Greece (19 bln euros) recorded the highest trade deficits.
Eurozone recorded a trade surplus of 4.6 billion euros with the rest of the world, while the EU-26 a trade deficit of 13.8 billion euros in the January-July period.
 Greek stocks end 0.64 pct higher on MondayGreek stocks moved higher on Monday as investors reacted positively to New Democracy's win in Sunday's general elections in the country. The composite index of the Athens Stock Exchange rose 0.64 percent to end at 4,892.97 points, with turnover a strong 447.87 million euros.
Sector indices ended with gains, with the Utilities (5.29 pct), Insurnace (4.07 pct) and Telecommunications (3.79 pct) scoring the biggest percentage gains of the day, while Healthcare (0.67 pct), Financial Services (0.67 pct) and Banks (0.57 pct) suffered losses.
The Big Cap index rose 0.30 pct, the Mid Cap index ended 0.36 pct lower and the Small Cap fell 0.11 percent. Thessaloniki Water (9.73 pct), Evrofarma (7.61 pct) and Cosmote (7.50 pct) were top gainers, while Tria Alpha (10.09 pct), Boutaris (10.0 pct) and Allatini Ceramics (9.63 pct) suffered losses.
Broadly, decliners led advancers by 136 to 104 with another 56 issues unchanged.
 Credit conditions improved in January-August, reportCredit conditions improved both in August and in the first eight months of the year, according to figures released on Monday. A monthly report by Teresias SA, the value of unpaid bills and cheques totalled 774.51 million euros in the January-August period, down from 932.27 million euros in the corresponding period last year, a decline of 17 percent.
Bounced cheques totalled 5,991 in August, worth 61.33 million euros, down 18.4 pct in volume and 21 percent in value from July. Both numbers were down 25.1 pct and 34.4 pct compared with August 2006. Teresias said August was the month with the lowest number of bounced cheques, but not in value with April recording a total of 60.43 million euros.
Unpaid bills totalled 8,704 in August, worth 11.67 million euros, down 8.7 pct in volume and 21.05 pct in value from July and lower by 20 percent and 23 percent, respectively, compared with August 2006.
In the eight-month period, bounced cheques totalled 61,847 worth 650.2 million euros, up from 73.253 and 801.85 million euros over the same period in 2006.
 Greek bond market closing reportTurnover in the Greek electronic secondary bond market totaled 1.14 billion euros on Monday, of which 725 million were buy orders and the remaining 415 million euros were sell orders. The 10-year benchmark bond (July 20, 2017) was the most heavily traded security with a turnover of 435 million euros. The yield spread between the 10-year Greek and German bonds was unchanged at 0.35 percent, with the Greek bond yielding 4.49 pct and the German Bund 4.14 percent.
In the domestic interbank market, interest rates moved lower. National Bank's overnight rate eased to 3.60 pct from 3.70 pct on Friday, the two-day rate fell to 3.80 pct from 3.85 pct, the one-month rate was 4.43 percent and the 12-month rate eased to 4.685 percent from 4.70 percent.
Sector indices ended as follows:
Oil & Gas: +0.36%
Personal & Household: -0.35%
Raw Materials: -0.51%
Travel & Leisure: -0.50%
Food & Beverages: +1.67%
Financial Services: -0.67%
The stocks with the highest turnover were National Bank, OTE, DEH and Eurobank.
Selected shares from the FTSE/ASE-20 index closed in euros as follows:
Alpha Bank: 24.00
Public Power Corp (PPC): 24.38
HBC Coca Cola: 37.60
Hellenic Petroleum: 10.30
Emporiki Bank: 20.28
National Bank of Greece: 43.40
EFG Eurobank Ergasias: 25.00
Titan Cement Company: 34.50
 ADEX closing reportFutures contract prices maintained their discount in the Athens Derivatives Exchange on Monday, with turnover a strong 276.820 million euros. The September contract on the FTSE 20 index was traded at a discount of 0.30 percent and the August contract on the FTSE 40 index at a discount of 0.40 percent.
Volume in futures contracts on the FTSE 20 index totaled 16,435 contracts worth 215.033 million euros, with 44,704 open positions in the market, while on the FTSE 40 index volume was 484 contracts worth 14.861 million euros, with 1,214 open positions.
Volume in futures contracts on equities totaled 21,355 contracts worth 33.243 million euros, with investment interest focusing on PPC's contracts (3,957), followed by OTE (616), Marfin Popular Bank (979), Piraeus Bank (1,182), National Bank (593), Alpha Bank (979), Intracom (3,347), Mytilineos (952) and ATEbank (2,423).
 Foreign Exchange Rates - TuesdayReference buying rates per euro released by the European Central Bank:
U.S. dollar 1.398
Pound sterling 0.699
Danish kroner 7.508
Swedish kroner 9.358
Japanese yen 160.73
Swiss franc 1.659
Norwegian kroner 7.864
Cyprus pound 0.588
Canadian dollar 1.436
Australian dollar 1.666
 Wildfire on Greek-Albanian borderA wildfire was reported in the Kali Vrysi site in the Kastoria border prefecture on Monday, with authorities saying the blaze spilled over from neighbouring Albanian territory.
One hectare of forestland has so far been burned, with several fire-fighting aircraft and ground forces battling the remote wildfire.
 Donations for the wildfire-stricken in GreeceNEW YORK (ANA-MPA/P. Panagiotou)
Mary Tzaharis, wife of Archdiocese Council vice president and billionaire Emmanuel Tzaharis, has donated one million dollars for the wildfire-stricken in Greece.
According to an announcement by Archbishop of America Demetrios, the donation by Tzaharis is taking place in memory of her parents, Ismini and George Spyrou, whose origin was in the Peloponnese.
Bank accounts have been opened by many Greek American agencies for the same purpose, as well as by the Archdiocese which, apart from the donation by Tzaharis, announced that an offer of 400,000 dollars has been made by a donor wishing to remain anonymous.
 Sunny, rise in temperatures on TuesdaySunny weather with northerly, northwesterly winds are forecast throughout the country on Tuesday with wind velocity reaching 5-6 beaufort. Scattered cloud in northern mainland Greece. Temperatures will range between 10C and 33C. Sunny in Athens, with northerly, northwesterly 3-5 beaufort winds and temperatures ranging from 19C to 31C. Same in Thessaloniki, with temperatures ranging from 17C to 30C.
 Cypriot FM condemns Gul's planned illegal visit to occupied areasNICOSIA (CNA/ANA-MPA)
The Cypriot Foreign Ministry condemned Tuesday's planned illegal visit to the Turkish occupied north by Turkey's new President Abdullah Gul, warning that its behaviour will not be tolerated and inevitably will create obstacles to Turkey's accession course.
On the eve of the illegal visit to the Turkish occupied north of the island, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said Turkey's actions depict its complete disrespect to the UN, EU and is a serious provocation against the international community.
In the statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that Tuesday's visit of Turkey's new President Abdullah Gul to the Turkish occupied areas of the Republic of Cyprus "is another illegal action by Turkey and a serious provocation which is against a member of the European Union and at large, against the EU itself and the international community in its entirety".
In its statement, the Cypriot FM "condemns, in the strongest possible manner, the action of the highest ranking Turkish official, who, following the orders of the Turkish commanders continues the rigid Turkish policy of international illegality, supporting the secessionist and internationally condemned structure created by the illegal Turkish invasion and occupation".
"This provocative action by the new President of the Turkish Republic, which violates both the UN charter and the abundant Security Council resolutions, constitutes the sole reply to those who were speculating or had illusions that the emergence of Mr. Gul to the presidency would mean, perhaps, some changes to Turkey's tactics and policies towards Cyprus", the statement added.
It further said "Mr. Gul's squawking action to pay his first visit as President of the Republic of Turkey in territory belonging to the Republic of Cyprus, which is today part of the EU territory and which for 33 years is under the illegal military Turkish occupation, constitutes a slap against the international legal order and undermines the credibility not only of the international organization but also of the EU itself which is currently holding accession negotiations with a country that is flouting in such provocative manner a member state as well as the international decisions on Cyprus".
The statement pointed out that "in recent statements, Turkish officials, like Prime Minister (Recep Tayip) Erdogan, in outlining his goals, the President of the Turkish National Assembly during his recent illegal visit to Cyprus but also Mr. Gul himself, in his capacity as former Foreign Minister, did not miss the opportunity to clearly state, that Turkey's aim is to promote the international recognition of the illegal secessionist structure and the creation of two states in Cyprus. It is under the framework of this policy that the Turkish government and military gave orders to the Turkish Cypriot leader to prevent the start of the Gambari procedure, to maintain the gap in the positions of the two sides with the aim to promote their secessionist pursuits".
"We call on the UN Secretary General and the five permanent members of the Security Council to warn, at the highest possible level, that such behavior not only does not help the efforts of the international community, but on the contrary, undermines them", the ministry said.
"The message should be sent to Turkey, on behalf of EU member states that such flagrant violations of the commitments Turkey has undertaken in its Negotiating Framework, to support the UN efforts and harmonise relations with the Republic of Cyprus, will not be tolerated and unavoidably will create obstacles to its accession course".
Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops invaded and occupied the island's northern third.
The Turkish Cypriot UDI was declared ''legally invalid'' by UN Security Council resolution 541 of November 1983, which called on all states not to recognise the self-styled regime and not to facilitate it in any way.
Only Turkey recognises the Turkish Cypriot regime.
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