|Monday, 18 November 2019|
Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 07-11-26
From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>Monday, 26 November 2007 Issue No: 2758
 Culture minister visits northern Greek archaeological sites in MacedoniaGreek Culture Minister Mihalis Liapis on Saturday paid a visit to the archaeological sites of Pella and Vergina in northern Greek province of Macedonia.
After a tour of the site in Pella, the minister underlined that the program for the unification of the archaeological site with the modern-day settlement is underway and that the construction of a new museum for the area will be completed within 2008 so that it would be ready to receive the first visitors in the middle of 2009.
In the same year, the rest of the works in the regions will be completed, as will a road linking the archaeological site with the modern town.
At Vergina, the minister described the site as one of the five most popular in the entire country based on the surveys of the number of visitors and the level of interest shown by the public.
He stressed that a wider region in and around Macedonia was an area of great archaeological value for the entire country, containing sites like Dion, Pella, Vergina, ancient Mieza and others.
"It is our obligation to Macedonia and the cultural heritage of our entire country to highlight this further," he added, noting that the restoration of the Aiges Palace will have been completed by the end of 2008, while there were also plans to begin work on a new museum for Vergina.
Since Friday, Liapis has been carrying out his first visit to Thessaloniki and Macedonia in northern Greece since he first took over as Greece's culture minister after the elections of September 16 this year.
He is due in the city of Thessaloniki at 19:30 to meet with representatives of the film industry and will attend an event in honour of late actor and director of the National Theatre Nikos Kourkoulos organized by the 48th Thessaloniki Film Festival at 22:00.
He will continue visits to all cultural bodies supervised by the culture ministry in Thessaloniki on Sunday, while later that night he will be among those presenting the awards at the end of the film festival competitive section.
 Turkish FM to pay official visit to Greece December 4-5Turkish foreign minister Ali Babacan will pay an official visit to Greece on December 4 and 5, following an invitation from his Greek counterpart Dora Bakoyannis, the Greek foreign ministry announced on Sunday.
The two ministers will review Greek-Turkish relations, with emphasis on strengthening bilateral cooperation.
They will also exchange views on European issues, including Turkey's EU accession course, as well as on recent developments in regional and international issues of mutual interest, the announcement said.
The full itinerary of Babacan's visit will be announced in the next few days.
 National Resistance Day celebrated at GorgopotamosThe 65th anniversary of the the blowing up of the Gorgopotamos bridge, near Lamia, when opposing Greek resistance organizations joined forces for the operation that seriously crippled the flow of Nazi military supplies was celebrated at the site on Sunday, marking National Resistance Day.
Resistance fighters from all over Greece attended the celebration, while a second celebration is being organized next Sunday by the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) affiliated resistance organizations.
A wreath was placed at the site by a representative of President of the Republic Karolos Papoulias, while representatives of political parties delivered brief messages on the message of the top resistance effort.
Deputy interior minister Christos Zois, representing the government at the event, spoke of the need for national unity, while ruling New Democracy (ND) party secretary Lefteris Zagorits stressed the need for unanimity on the major issues facing the country, and main opposition PASOK representative Stefanos Tzoumakas said there were different interpretations of the meaning of national unity, adding that the effort was continuing today on the major issues.
Coalition of the Radical Left (SYRIZA) MP Grigoris Psarianos said that the message of Gorgopotamos and the National Resistance remained unfulfilled today, and would remain so for as long as there was a big difference between words and actions.
Ruling New Democracy central committee secretary Vassilis Meimarakis said that the commemoration honored the greatness of the Greek nation, which could accomplish great things and set the example.
Main opposition PASOK deputy Christos Papoutsis said that Gorgopotamos marked the common desire of the Greeks for freedom and democracy, and proved the value of national agreement and the unity of the people when required.
 International conference on the environment and sustainable growthA two-day international conference on "Society of the Citizens, Environment and Sustainable Growth - From Information to Active Participation" ended on Sunday at Athens' Pantios University, during which policies and problems, prospects and international practices regarding the environment and sustainable development were discussed.
The conference was organized with the cooperation of two NGOs -- the Greek "Mediterranean SOS Network" and Cyprus' AKTI (Research and Studies Centre) -- with the Pantios University's European Centre for Environmental Studies and Orientation.
Representatives of scientific, social and political agencies, international and European organizations, experts, researchers and administrative officials from Greece, Cyprus and the EU exchanged views and experiences.
Addressing the event on Sunday, ruling New Democracy (ND) party MP Petros Tatoulis stressed that the problems were many and multi-dimensional, linked with a variety of forms and long-established perceptions, attitudes and practices, adding that every form of social problem required fruitful and constructive dialogue.
He said that extreme weather phenomena observed in recent times indicated that there was no room for postponment in tackling the problem, and consequently there was no more room for complacency and half-measures, as Greece continued to depend to an excessive degree on pollution-causing fossil fuels, and was also lagging in the adoption of alternative forms of energy.
Tatoulis warned that so long as fossil fuels continued to be the financially sounder solution (with respect to cost effectiveness), they would continue to dominate in production, and alternative solutions would remain "a hope".
In order for the alternative solutions to be energy-efficient, however, they needed to be perfected, and in order to be perfected, research -- "in other words, money" -- was required, he said, adding that this came with growth.
Consequently, he continued, the time has come to approach the situation in a realistic manner, and countries must finally manifest the required maturity in order to proceed with rapid steps to the drafting of a "free policy on ecology", transcending the so-called "scientific ecology" and moving ahead to a new era of "political ecology".
Main opposition PASOK MP Yannis Maniatis caled for the immediate establishment of an autonomous ministry of the environment, explaining that a different environmental approach, taxation-wise, was required in Greece, a genuine "green revolution", that would entail drastic reduction of taxes on environment-friendly actions and projects on the one hand, with increased taxation on pollution-causing actions on the other.
 French ambassador to visit Patra on MondayFrench ambassador to Greece, Christophe Farnaud, will visit the western port city of Patra on Monday, where he will have meetings with Patra mayor Andreas Fouras and regional director for western Greece K. Spyridonas.
Farnaud is also scheduled to visit the 3rd Patra highschool, where he will met with a group of Francophone pupils, followed by a visit to the local branch of the Institute Francaise, where he will speak on the promotion of the teaching of the French language.
Later in the day, the ambassador will meet with Patra University rector Stavros Koumbias to discuss the strengthening of university cooperation between Patra University and France.
According to a French embassy announcement, the University of Patra is an important Francophony factor in Greece, due to its inter-university cooperation agreements with some 30 universities and Schools in France, including the Sorbonne, the University of Paris, the Ecole Centrale in Paris, INALCO, and others.
On Monday evening, Ambassador Farnaud will inaugurate an exhibition of photographs by Vangelis and Aggelos Rassias, on the theme "Fortresses of Greece".
 FinMin to sign NSRF 2007-13 Operational Programs formal commencement on MondayNational economy and finance minister George Alogoskoufis will sign the formal commencement of the materialization of Operational Programmes of the National Strategic Reference Framework (NSRF) 2007-2013 in Brussels on Monday, together with European regional affairs commissioner Danuta Hubner and employment, social affairs and equal opportunities commissioner Vladimir Spidia, a ministry announcement said on Sunday.
The Greek delegation to the signing event will also include deputy minister Yannis Papathanasiou and ministry secretary general for investments and development Panayiotis Drosos.
 Greek, Turkish commercial chambers sign two cooperation protocolsThe 8th Greek-Turkish Economic Meeting of the Greek islands of the Aegean and the Turkish coast ended on Sunday in the Greek southeastern port city of Kalamata with the signing of two cooperation protocols between the Chambers of Commerce of Messinia and Izmir, and the Greek-Turkish Chamber.
At a press conference after the two-day meeting, which culminated with a discussion among the chairmen of the chambers -- which was co-organized by the chamber of commerce of Messinia in the Peloponnese, that of Izmir in Turkey, the Greek-Turkish chamber of commerce and the Association of Island Chambers -- the conclusions of the meeting were made public, including a decision that the process will also be extended to include the mainland, with the next meeting in Greece to be held in Tripolis.
Discussions also focused on the marketing of olive oil, while the conclusions further provide for the organization in Izmir of an international conference on olive oil, as well as for supporting youth, adding that scholarships will be granted to two youths from the Greek islands to study at the economic university of Izmir.
Earlier on Sunday, the delegates visited the areas on Mt. Taygetos that were burned in the past summer's devastating wild fires for an on-the-spot inspection of the ecological destruction, and held a symbolic tree-planting on one of the slopes, in the Greek-Turkish Friendship Forest.
The delegates also decided on joint action aimed at protection of the environment, joint tackling of fires, and action on global warming.
Another decision reached was to back Izmir's candidacy to host the EXPO 2015, while delegates also discussed the organization of exhibitions in Izmir and Thessaloniki for projection of their tourism products, and the founding of a tourism agency that will promote a joint tourism package for the EU countries.
Another issue discussed was the establishment of an airline link between Izmir and Thessaloniki, as well as a coastal shipping link from Izmir to Thessaloniki and Piraeus.
The two sides further agreed to advance joint action plans aimed at developing cultural contacts and backing artistic initiatives, while the Greek side reiterated its support for Turkey's EU membership aspirations.
The delegates also proposed a moratorium on overflights of military aircraft over the Aegean, and decided to launch a signature collection campaign, in which the chambers of Turkey will also participate, stressing that the proposal was unrelated to the sovereign rights of the two parties and was not a political decision, noting at the same time that the Aegean must become a "sea of peace".
Participating in the meeting were MPs and business people of both countries.
The Turkish delegates were due to be given a tour of Kalamata and visit Petalidi, Messinia, before their return flight from Kalamata to Izmir on Sunday evening.
Kalamata was chosen as the venue of the 8th meeting in order to give additional publicity to the fire-stricken region after the summer's devastating fires, raise its profile and discuss the possibility of business parternships in the area.
 Polis 2007 international exhibition ends with awards to best squares, pedestrian walksThe Polis 2007: 6th International Exhibition of Local Goverment, Public and Social Sector and Private Enterprises, organized by Greece's exhibitions organiser Helexpo at the Thessaloniki International Fair (TIF) grounds, ended on Sunday with the presentation of a Special Award and 8 honorable mentions at the tandem event "1st Competition for the most beautiful Square and Pedestrian Walk".
The special award went to the Aiani Central Square in the town of Aiani, Kozani prefecture, for the "creation of an exemplary green and space in the site of the old School Garden, on a human scale, enriched with the most characteristic elements of the region's flora, with a strong educational orientation, and the ultimate goal of enjoyment for local residents and visitors".
 First Conference of Greek Commerce begins at DelphiThe responsibility of small and medium-sized commercial enterprises to promptly respond to changes in the business environment and find a suitable role within it was stressed by speakers at the first Conference of Greek Commerce that began at the European Cultural Centre of Delphi on Saturday.
Development Minister Christos Folias said that small and medium-sized businesses do not need support but a "clarification" of the terms of the market. With this direction in mind, the government was aiming at a number of measures that included a reduction in bureaucracy and removing the "stigma" from making a profit, since the government's position was that healthy profit was a force that moved markets. He also noted that the time was ripe, perhaps, for the formation of trade associations.
Other speakers said that success in the business environment did not necessarily go to those that were largest but those that were quickest in adapting to new conditions.
Tourism Development Minister Aris Spiliotopoulos stressed the need for dialogue and cooperation between tourism and commerce.
 Greek clothing industry association to visit CairoCAIRO (ANA-MPA - N. Katsikas)
A delegation from the Association of Knitting - Ready-made Clothing Enterprises of Greece (SEPEE) will begin a three-day visit to Cairo on Sunday to investigate the prospects of expansion by Greek ready-made clothing businesses in Egypt.
 Foreign Exchange Rates - MondayReference buying rates per euro released
by the European Central Bank:
U.S. dollar 1.492
Pound sterling 0.726
Danish kroner 7.514
Swedish kroner 9.393
Japanese yen 161.15
Swiss franc 1.645
Norwegian kroner 8.112
Cyprus pound 0.588
Canadian dollar 1.473
Australian dollar 1.710
 Chinese film awarded in Thessaloniki Film FestivalThe film "Red Awn" by Chinese director Shangjun Cai won the Golden Alexander award in the international section of the Thessaloniki Film Festival which ended on Sunday.
The best film award is accompanied with a prize of 37,000 euros.
The Silver Alexander award (22,000 euros) was awarded to the film "PVC-1" by 29-year-old Spyros Stathopoulos who lives with his family in Colombia.
The director's award was won by Estonian Veiko Ounpuu for his film "Autumn ball".
The scenario award was received by Greeks Thanos Anastasopoulos and Vassilis Raisis for the scenario of the film which was directed by the former under the title "Correction".
The best actress award went to Greek Anna Lalasidou for her interpretation in the German production of the Greek director Athanassios Karanikolas entitled "Elli Makra - 42277 Wuppertal".
The best actor award went to Colombian Alberto Sornoza for his interpretation in the film "PVC-1".
 Culture minister attends honorary event at Thessaloniki Film FestivalCulture Minister Mihalis Liapis on Sunday attended an honorary event at the 48th Thessaloniki Film Festival in memory of late actor Nikos Kourkoulos.
"The actor embodied the model of the popular man and left his mark in theatre and cinema through his interpretations," Liapis said.
The event was also attended by Macedonia-Thrace Minister Margaritis Tzimas, Sports Undersecretary Yiannis Ioannidis, deputies and local officials.
 Danny Glover on Venezuela's Chavez, George Bush and racismIn a masterclass given at the 48th Thessaloniki Film Festival on Saturday as a tribute to his work, U.S actor Danny Glover declared himself a friend of Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez but described U.S. President George Bush as a "racist".
Most widely known as the co-star of Mel Gibson in the huge box office success "Lethal Weapon" and its sequels, Glover said that he did not look down on 'Lethal Weapon' as a fillm, especially as it had generated many millions of dollars that he was able to invest according to the values of the Civil Rights Movement.
The deeply political African American actor - first established through Spielberg's "The Colour Purple" and then through roles like the eldest slave in Lars von Trier's "Manderley" - is now about to produce two films that will be funded by Venezuela, whose Congress recently approved 20 million dollars for their production.
One of these will be on the life of Simon Bolivar based on a book by author Gabriel Garcia Marquez, while the other will be based on the life of Haiti rebel Toussaint Louverture.
According to Glover, racism is a constant fact of life and something that he has to fight, no matter what his position may be: "Every day of my life I walk down the street having in mind that I'm black, however successful I may be. And our success is moderated by this. I am successful for a black man," Glover said, who adds that the institution of slavery, even though officially abolished, is always "in the background" in his country.
"We refuse to understand the pathology of this system," the actor and former United Nations Goodwill Ambassador said.
 Exhibition of photographs of Constantine KaramanlisAn exhibition of photographs depicting the life of senior 20th-century statesman Constantine Karamanlis, one of the most important political figures to mark Greece's history in the second half of the century, is being held in his home town of Serres to mark the 100th anniversary since the late politician's birth.
Many of the photographs on display were presented to the public for the first time when the exhibition opened its doors on Friday, the opening of which was attended by former minister and current MP for Serres Achilleas Karamanlis.
The exhibition will run until December 14.
 Parliament president visits ArchbishopParliament president Dimitris Sioufas on Sunday visited ailing Archbishop Christodoulos at the latter's home, and conveyed the wishes of the MPs and parliament employees for a speedy recovery.
Health minister Dimitris Avramopoulos was also scheduled to visit the Archbishop later in the day.
 6 members of theft ring arrested for beating, robbery of jewel-smith, making away with 1 million euro in jewelry, 11,000 euros in cashPolice in northern Greece have arrested six people -- including one woman -- who are accused of an incident in April in Kilkis prefecture, in which persons posing as police officers robbed a 57-year-old jewel-smith of jewelry valued at one million euros, and the jeweler's wife of 11,000 euros in cash, Central Macedonia police chief Stergios Apostolidis announced on Sunday, during a press conference, adding that three more people involved in the theft ring were wanted.
According to Apostolidis, the robbery took place on April 3 near Polykastro, Kilkis, where the jewel-smith and his wife had gone to display their merchandise to a jewelry shop owner.
He said that four individuals, wearing traffic police uniforms and riding in a dark, civilian car with a police strobe light on its roof, flagged down the jewel-smith's car on the pretext of a police check. The culprits dragged the jewel-smith out of his car, beat him and grabbed six satchels containing jewelry worth one million euros from the car, while they also removed 11,000 euros from the woman's handbag.
The assailants slashed the tires of the jewel-smith's car before they fled, so that the victims would not be able to chase them.
Apostolidis said that nine people, all Greeks, including the jewelry shop owner, were involved in the ring, and it was believed that the ring was involved in other such robberies.
The six detainees, who will be brought before an examining magistrate on Monday, are charged with setting up a criminal organisation and robbery.
Apostolidis said that the detainees have also had run-ins with the law in the past, and knew the area very well as frequent visitors and through occasional employment at a nearby casino.
He said the other three ring members were wanted.
Apostolidis further said that similar incidents have taken place recently in Kozani, Katerini and Volos.
Kilkis police director Nikos Pappas said that the detainees would be brought before an examining magistrate on Monday.
 Two foreigners caught with 307 kilos cannabisTwo Albanian nationals in two vehicles were pursued and caught by police at dawn on Saturday as they attempted to smuggle 307 kilos of cannabis into Greece. The two men, who were armed with a Kalashnikov rifle, were arrested in a forest in the Voios area in Grevena by police and border guards.
The passenger of one car and one other person of Albanian nationality in a third car managed to escape.
The chase began when police spotted the three cars on the 6th kilometer of a minor road from Grevena to Myrsine and tried to pull them over, at which the suspects picked up speed and tried to get away toward the Egnatia highway.
Police managed to force two of the cars to stop, at which point one of the passengers jumped out and ran into the forest. The third car managed to escape police road blocks and was abandoned by its driver on the Grevena-Elato road, who again left on foot.
The two individuals arrested had work and residence permits allowing them to stay in Greece, while the identity of the two that escaped is not known. A preliminary inquiry has been launched by the Grevena security department.
 Woman's body torched in act of vandalismThe body of a elderly woman who had died and was in a coffin awaiting burial at a cemetery in Kalamaria, Thessaloniki in northern Greece was set alight in the early hours of Saturday morning when unidentified culprits jumped over the cemetery fence and started a fire.
According to a police announcement, the same group also set fire to a hearse parked on a nearby street about five minutes later.
An investigation has been launched by the local traffic police department.
 Car set alight during brawl involving PAOK FC fansA brawl between fans of the Thessaloniki-based team PAOK and passers-by in eastern districts of Thessaloniki ended with the torching of a car and several shop windows broken in the early hours of Saturday.
The PAOK fans were distributing flyers regarding a rally being held by their team on Sunday.
The violence broke out at around 2:30 in the morning.
 Petrol bomb lobbed at cashpoint machine on CreteAn ATEBank cashpoint machine in the Iraklio TEI on Crete was seriously damaged early on Saturday morning when unknown parties lobbed a petrol bomb at it. A guard saw two people running away when the fire began to spread while no money was taken.
 Child prostitution ring broken up by policeA child prostitution ring that forced underage foreign children into paid encounters with men, in appointments set up by phone, was uncovered and broken up by Attica security police, it was announced on Sunday.
Acting on a tip-off, police arrested a 50-year-old man as he was coming out of a central Athens hotel together with a 16-year-old boy of foreign nationality, who said they had met the pimps at a downtown Athens bar, while the pimps later made a rendezvous for the man with the boy for a fee of 100 euros.
Police raided the bar immediately afterwards, arresting the 56-year0old owner, who is charged with making appointments for customers of his bar with underage foreign boys for fees ranging from 10 to 150 euros.
Five more foreign boys, aged 18-20, were found on the premises during a search of the bar and taken to Security police headquarters for questioning. One of the detainees was arrested on charges of carrying forged identification documents, while two others were facing administrative deportation.
All detainees were taken before a public prosecutor.
 Child porn discovered in shop storeroom in Iraklio, CreteOne person was arrested on Saturday after police discovered quantities of child pornography in a shop store room in Iraklio on Crete. The man allegedly transported the pornographic material there at the orders of an accomplice currently being held in prison for similar offences.
An investigation has been launched by the Iraklio police.
 World Cup preliminary draw - Europe; Greece in Group 2The World Cup preliminary draw for Europe was held on Sunday and Greece has been placed in Group 2.
Group 2 also consists of Israel, Switzerland, Moldova, Latvia and Luxembourg.
Thirteen nations qualify for the finals.
There are nine Groups in the preliminary draw
Nine group winners qualify for the finals. The eight best runners-up go into direct playoffs from which the four winners qualify for the finals.
Results of the Greek Super League soccer matches played over the weekend:
PAOK Thessaloniki - Panionios Athens 3-1
Xanthi - Iraklis Thessaloniki 0-3
Ergotelis Crete - Asteras Tripoli 0-3
Larissa - Panathinaikos Athens 2-2
Olympiakos Piraeus - Veria 1-0
AEK Athens - OFI Crete 4-0
Apollon Kalamaria - Atromitos Athens 0-2
Levadiakos Livadia - Aris Thessaloniki 2-0
Standings after nine weeks of play:
AEK 21 points
 Scattered showers, windy on MondayScattered showers with southerly, southwesterly winds are forecast in most parts of the country on Monday, with wind velocity reaching 6-7 beaufort. Temperatures will range between 01C and 20C. Partly cloudy in Athens, with strong southerly, southwesterly 6-7 beaufort winds and temperatures ranging from 08C to 18C. Rain in Thessaloniki, with temperatures ranging from 08C to 15C.
 Commonwealth leaders call for July 8 Agreement to startKAMPALA (CNA/ANA-MPA)
The Commonwealth Heads of Government stressed the need here Sunday for the implementation of the July 8th July Agreement without delay and without preconditions.
In their paragraph on Cyprus which is included in the joint communique approved on Sunday, last day of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting held in Kampala, Uganda, the heads of government also agreed on the importance of supporting the efforts of the UN Secretary General to bring about a comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem in line with relevant UN Security Council Resolutions.
Furthermore, they expressed their support for a lasting, just and functional settlement based on the principles of the United Nations Charter, the relevant UN Security Council resolutions and the principles of the Commonwealth.
The Commonwealth Heads of Government reiterated their support for the respect of human rights of all Cypriots, including the right to property, the implementation of the relevant resolutions of the European Court of Human Rights and for the accounting for all missing persons.
In a statement to CNA, Cyprus President Tassos Papadopoulos has described as satisfactory the reference to Cyprus in the resolution of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.
The paragraph on Cyprus in the joint communique is as follows: ''Reaffirming their previous Communiques on Cyprus, Heads of Government expressed their support for the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and unity of the Republic of Cyprus. They expressed their support for a lasting, just and functional settlement based on the principles of the United Nations Charter, the relevant UN Security Council resolutions and the principles of the Commonwealth.
Heads of Government called for the implementation of UN Security Council Resolutions on Cyprus, in particular Security Council Resolutions 365 (1974), 541 (1983), 550 (1984), 1250 (1999) and all subsequent resolutions. They reiterated their support for the respect of human rights of all Cypriots, including the right to property, the implementation of the relevant resolutions of the European Court of Human Rights and for the accounting for all missing persons.
Heads of Government further agreed on the importance of supporting the efforts of the UN Secretary General to bring about a comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem in line with relevant UN Security Council Resolutions.
Heads of Government welcomed the principles and decisions enshrined in the 8 July Agreement and stressed the need to start the process as described in UN Under-Secretary General Gambari's letter of 15 November 2006, without delay and without preconditions, in order to prepare the ground for full-fledged negotiations, leading to a comprehensive and durable settlement''.
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