|Monday, 16 July 2018|
Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 10-08-19
From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>Thursday, 19 August 2010 Issue No: 3570
 Alt. FM on standing Greek foreign policy; Netanyahu visitAlternate Foreign Minister Dimitris Droutsas, replying on a question on the visit to Athens by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during an interview with a local television channel on Tuesday, reiterated that Greek foreign policy is has not changed.
Droutsas stressed that closer contacts with Israel are not circumstantial, reminding that during the 1994-2004 period many substantive overtures had been made towards the Israeli side.
The minister also stressed that the moves that Athens is making with Israel and the policy it is exercising cannot place relations with Turkey in jeopardy.
"... all our neighbours must realise that Greece has its own interests, it exercises its own foreign policy on the basis of values and on the basis of our own interests."
Finally, he cited what he called a very consistent policy towards Turkey, "we desire rapprochement and close cooperation with Turkey and we are receiving the same message from the Turkish side as well."
Speaking to a local radio station on Wednesday, he added: "I think that after two days of important and useful talks with the Prime Minister of Israel, Mr. Netanyahu, here in Athens, our appraisal can be that this was a very useful meeting. I think this meeting was a complete success, because with regard to the ggoals we set - that is, the deepening of our relations with Israel, and particularly the deepening of our cooperation with Israel - I think things are moving in the direction we wanted.
"As Greece, we want to be able to develop these relations with Israel - to deepen our cooperation. We'll go into greater detail later, if you want. And I want to stress that we are convinced that this cooperation with Israel is in the interests of Greece and the interests of the whole Middle East region.
Asked if the visit by the Israeli PM changes any of the longstanding strategies of Greek diplomacy, the alternate FM said: "Not at all ... The axes of our foreign policy are clear and well known. And I want to stress this, as well, because there are a lot of comments being made to the effect that "the traditional cooperation we have had with the Arab world is being jeopardised." I want to be categorical in saying that there is no such issue ... Cooperation with Israel does not preclude close cooperation with the Arab world, and particularly our Palestinian friends. These relations with the Arab world are relations of credibility, of trust, that we have managed to create in the past."
 More measures against tax evasionThe finance ministry's special crimes squad (SDOE) will create five special action groups in September to tackle wide-spread tax evasion, in accordance with decisions taken during a meeting between FinMin George Papaconstantinou and the head of SDOE.
The units will focus on five sectors: large income-earners, individuals owning considerable real estate holdings, people with major overdue debts to the state, businesses and self-employed professionals. The aim, expectedly, is to increase VAT and income tax collections.
 ND calls for measures to stimulate economyA main opposition New Democracy (ND) spokesman on Wednesday reiterated the party's call for immediate measures to boost domestic markets, pointing to what he said was a decrease in tourism-related revenues, foreign direct investments and retailers' turnover.
"This decease ... shows that the recession will worsen and be protracted. The hunt for revenue will prove a lost cause if measures are not taken here and now to stimulate the market," ND deputy and former minister Panos Panayiotopoulos said.
He also cited the issue of threatened increases in the price flour and related products, putting the blame on the government.
"Greece cannot have the most expensive flour in Europe and the PASOK government act like it doesn't understand. Consumers, who are seeing their incomes shrink day by day and prices on the shelves skyrocket, must be immediately protected," he added.
 569,742 registered unemployed with OAED in JulyThe registered number of unemployed with the Manpower Employment Organisation (OAED) totalled 569,742 in July, 0.52 percent higher compared to the previous month.
According to OAED, subsidised unemployed people reached 184,709 and are 4.09 percent (7,266 people) more compared to June 2010.
Hiring amounted to 92,996 and are 20.91 percent lower when compared to the previous month. Dismissals (termination of contracts of an unlimited period) totalled 27,003, expiration of work contracts of a specific period reached 35,517 and voluntary resignations 29,417.
 Finansbank share cap increaseThe board of directors of Turkey-based Finansbank, a National Bank subsidiary, announced a share capital increase on Wednesday worth roughly 285 million euros.
 Stocks flat on Wed.Investors' interest at the Athens Stock Exchange again ebbed on Wednesday following the previous day's rally, with the composite index of the market down 0.81 percent to end at 1,664.50 points. Turnover was a low 56.98 million euros.
The Big Cap index lost 1.11 pct, the Mid Cap index ended 0.49 pct higher and the Small Cap index decreased by 0.69 pct. Petroleum products (1.16 pct) and Commerce (0.88 pct) scored the biggest percentage gains of the day, while Telecoms (2.50 pct) and Banks (1.38 pct) recorded the biggest losses.
Broadly, advancers trailed decliners by 63 to 87 with another 56 issues unchanged.
Sector indices ended as follows:
Oil & Gas: +1.16%
Personal & Household: -0.96%
Raw Materials: -0.60%
Travel & Leisure: -0.61%
Food & Beverages: -0.04%
Financial Services: -0.55%
The stocks with the highest turnover were National Bank, Alpha Bank, Eurobank and OPAP.
Selected shares from the FTSE/ASE-20 index closed in euros as follows:
Alpha Bank: 5.90
Public Power Corp (PPC): 13.46
HBC Coca Cola: 18.10
Hellenic Petroleum: 6.28
National Bank of Greece: 10.69
EFG Eurobank Ergasias: 5.75
Bank of Piraeus: 4.75
 Foreign Exchange rates - ThursdayReference buying rates per euro released by the European Central Bank:
U.S. dollar 1.298
Pound sterling 0.829
Danish kroner 7.509
Swedish kroner 9.520
Japanese yen 110.81
Swiss franc 1.353
Norwegian kroner 7.993
Canadian dollar 1.334
Australian dollar 1.438
 Foreign national arrested for multiple arson attemptsÁ 33-year-old man from Bulgaria who was arrested by authorities early Wednesday in Kalamata, extreme southwest Greece, after reportedly confessing to 16 arson attempts in the wider region.
According to reports, the suspect was spotted by local residents near site where fires had erupted. Police questioned the man on Wednesday, who is expected to face a Kalamata prosecutor later in the day.
 Three wildfires in Messinia prefectureTwo wildfires broke out almost simultaneously, according to authorities, at roughly 14:25 and 14:35 on Wednesday, in two sites in the municipality of Andania -- northern Messinia prefecture of extreme SW Greece.
A third fire erupted in the morning at the Vryses site, in the coastal Kyparissia region.
All three wildfires raged late in the afternoon, with firefighters and local volunteers battling the blazes, backed by firefighting aircraft.
 Wildfire on Zakynthos ragingA wildfire that broke out on Tuesday afternoon in the Damaria site on the Ionian island of Zakynthos raged on Wednesday, while another blaze the in Katostari site was reportedly under control.
The two fronts of the wildfire approached residential areas during the night but the blaze was contained. Strong winds in the area are making firefighters' mission difficult.
 New West Nile virus casesFour new instances of West Nile virus were reported on Tuesday from northern Greece, bringing the total number of cases to 64. Thirty-one of the infected people are still hospitalised, eight of them in various ICUs.
 Major heroin seizure on RhodesAuthorities on Rhodes seized three kilos of heroin hidden in the knapsacks of a 30-year-old Romanian tourist who arrived from the Turkish resort of Marmaris on Tuesday.
The suspect reportedly told customs officers that he travelled to Marmaris to find employment, only to be enticed into transporting the heroin for 10,000 euros.
The suspect was sent before a Rhodes prosecutor.
 Bank robbers take 150K euros following shootout in C. GreeceA National Bank branch in the town Malesina, central Greece, was robbed on Wednesday for the third time in two months, with two gunmen taking 150,000 euros following a vicious exchange of gunfire with a pair of policemen.
According to police, a suspect approached the teller and pointed with a gun at a cashier before demanding all the cash, when told the money was stored in a time-delayed safe, the brazen robber reportedly replied:"Don't worry, I know that; I'll wait."
Meanwhile, the second perpetrator opened fire with an assault-type rifle on a police patrol car that arrived at the scene, in the town's main square.
A massive manhunt was launched in the area to find the suspects.
 Migrant smuggler arrested while ferrying illegalsPolice in the Ferres border district of Evros prefecture arrested an alleged migrant smuggler as he ferried some eight illegals across the Evros River on the frontier with Turkey aboard a dinghy.
According to police, the suspect refused to stop the inflatable he was piloting, later abandoning it with the illegal migrants still on board.
He was later detected in a marshy riverbank and arrested.
 Exhibitions of noted Greek artists on TinosWorks of 47 noted Greek painters are on display at an exhibition held at the Arnados village's cultural centre on the Cycladic island of Tinos.
"For the first time Tinos becomes an island gallery, which calls not only art lovers but also each one of us to visit," Tinos Mayor Simos Orfanos said.
Works by Yannis Moralis, Spyros Papaloukas, Tsarouchis, Nikos Nikolaou as well as Opi Zouni, Dimitris Mytaras and Fassianos' focusing on Grecian landscapes and skies, Aegean scenes and islands' architecture.
The exhibition will run until Aug. 22.
 Fair on ThursdayFair weather and northerly winds are forecast in most parts of the country on Thursday, with wind velocity reaching 3-7 beaufort. Temperatures will range between 17C and 38C. Fair in Athens, with northerly 3-5 beaufort winds and temperatures ranging from 24C to 37C. Same in Thessaloniki, with temperatures ranging from 24C to 36C.
 The Wednesday edition of Athens ' dailies at a glanceEfforts to curb widespread tax evasion, gloomy forecasts by the "Economist" for the Greek economy, the unemployment rate and pension reforms mostly dominated the headlines on Wednesday in Athens ' newspapers.
ADESMEFTOS TYPOS: "STOP to small rallies / protests in downtown Athens ."
APOGEVMATINI: "Golden receipts - Which instances double discount in taxes".
AVGHI: "Speculators having great time".
AVRIANI: "Americans will fool us again and will turn us into a battlefield."
ELEFTHEROS: "Labour ministry's circular on pensions".
ELEFTHEROS TYPOS: "How prices in staple goods are skyrocketing".
ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "Finance ministry sends crime squad to plug 2.6 billion euros hole."
ESTIA: "We must become country of producers".
ETHNOS: "250 financial crime squad officers on special missions".
IMERISSIA: "Banks' heat in Athens Stock Exchange - 2.81% rise and latest deal rumors".
KATHIMERINI: "Prosecutor for scandals on Mykonos - Millions of euros in fraud vis-à-vis municipal taxes, involvement of off-shore companies".
NAFTEMPORIKI: "Alarm over a re-evaluations domino".
RIZOSPASTIS: "NATO plays nasty games against people of Middle East - Greece- Israel agreement of strategic importance".
TA NEA: "Merchants' civil war over sales, special discounts".
TO VIMA: "Finance ministry raid at villas, pleasure craft and VAT".
VRADYNI: "Black September for society - ' Waterloo ' in revenues lead to new austerity measures".
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