|Friday, 19 January 2018|
Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 11-12-12
From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>Monday, 12 December 2011 Issue No: 3950
 Troika returns as critical week begins for Greek economyThe European Commission (EC), European Central Bank (ECB) and International Monetary Fund (IMF) 'troika' returns to Athens on Monday at the start of a critical week for the Greek economy.
Budget revenues and expenditures will come under the troika's scrutiny, as well as other issues on which the Greek government has committed itself to materialising.
Regarding state revenues, a further shortfall has been posted despite all the measures that have been taken by the government, attributed to a deeper than anticipated recession, which is expected to approach 6 percent in 2011 and could be the harbinger of more austerity measures.
At the same time, talks will resume with the private sector on the voluntary bond swaps programme, the so-called PSI, aiming at a haircut of the Greek debt by some 50 percent, or 100 billion euro.
 DM Avramopoulos gives interview to newspaperDefence Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos, speaking in an interview with the newspaper Typos tis Kyriakis, said that "truth, sincerity and realism are necessary for us to forge ahead" and reminded that throughout his entire political course he has been a consistent supporter of consensus, national understanding, cooperation and political culture.
Avramopoulos also said that the government's time duration has been determined and if there will be a deviation in time it shall be small.
 Balkan Green Parties meeting endsThe three-day meeting of the network of Balkan countries' Green Parties, that began in Athens last Friday, came to an end focusing on the economic and system crisis that Europe is experiencing.
The inaugural meeting was attended by delegations of Green Parties from Greece, Bulgaria, Romania, Slovenia, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, FYROM, Albania and Turkey with the aim of promoting the Green Agenda in the Balkans and policies to handle the current crisis.
 Foreign Exchange rates - MondayReference buying rates per euro released by the European Central Bank:
U.S. dollar 1.358
Pound sterling 0.865
Danish kroner 7.546
Swedish kroner 9.153
Japanese yen 105.51
Swiss franc 1.251
Norwegian kroner 7.792
Canadian dollar 1.387
Australian dollar 1.337
 AMNA work stoppages continue through Monday, rolling 24h strikes Tues-ThursOngoing work stoppages at AMNA will continue on Sunday and Monday, December 11-12, followed by 24-hour rolling strikes from Tuesday through Friday (Dec. 13-15) by decision of the journalists' unions.
Three work stoppages will be taking place daily at AMNA (ANA-MPA) on Sunday and Monday, December 11-12, from 6:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m., from 14:00 to 18:00, and from 19:00 to midnight, against the government's measures of reserve labour and uniform salary scale, which also affect the news agency.
Three 24-hour rolling strikes will also take place from 6:00 a.m. Tuesday to 6:00 a.m. Friday.
During the work stoppages and strikes news items and information will not be broadcast by the Agency and the ANA-MPA website will not be updated.
The ongoing stoppages and strikes come in protest to efforts by the government to institute a unified wage scale, initially foreseen for civil servants, on AMNA staff.
 Pharmacies closed on Wednesday throughout GreecePharmacies will be closed throughout Greece on Wednesday, December 14, in a 24-hour nationwide warning strike called by the Panhellenic Pharmaceutical Association, which has also warned of an escalation of mobilisations with nationwide suspension of credit to all social security funds as of January 1, 2012 or earlier.
The pharmacists are protesting the "downgrading of pharmaceutical care and economic asphyxiation" the pharmacies are suffering.
Federation president Theodoros Ambatzoglou, in a statement, left open the prospect of escalation and intensification of the sector's mobilisations.
The Federation said the pharmacies are unable to function due to the discontinuation of credit by suppliers and the social security funds' failure to pay the money owed to the pharmacies.
 Seven armed robberies in Attica prefectureSeven armed robberies took place in the Attica prefecture between Friday afternoon and dawn on Saturday.
In one case an armed robber stole an unspecified amount of money from a super market in the Athens suburb of Holargos and in another a super market in Nikea was robbed by two gunmen.
The other five robberies occurred in Nea Makri, Kypseli, Nea Philadelphia Pangrati and Exarchia. In all cases the robbers succeeded in escaping and are being sought by police.
 Woman arrested for attempting to travel to Germany with forged passportA 28-year old Afghan woman was arrested at Kalamata airport, in the Peloponnese, for attempting to travel to Germany with a forged passport.
A passport check for flights to Munich, Germany, revealed that the woman attempted to travel with a forged Finnish passport which was confiscated.
 Antiquities arrest in LoutrakiA 51-year-old man was arrested in the seaside town of Loutraki on Sunday after a large number of antiquities were found on his farm.
Corinth police found and seized 132 pieces of potsherd, a marble architectural item, fragments of clay pots, and more than 500 other artifacts dating back to the Mycenaean, Archaic, Classical, Roman and Byzantine eras.
They also found and confiscated 16.5 grams of hashish and a precision scale.
The confiscated artifacts have been sent to the culture ministry's archaeological service, while the detainee will be sent before a Corinth prosecutor.
 Four foreign nationals arrested for stealing metal cablesFour Bulgarian nationals, aged 27-46, were arrested, by Thessa-loniki police in Echedoros on Sunday for stealing a large quan-tity of metal cables and other products from a metalworks in-dustry.
The theft was discovered by industry employees, who imme-diately alerted police.
The detainees will appear before a Thessaloniki prosecutor.
 Thieves make off with more than 100,000 euros in jewelry in EfkarpiaTwo unidentified thieves stormed a jewelry shop in Efkarpia, Thessaloniki prefecture, and escaped with jewelry valued at 100,000-150,000 euros.
The thieves immobilised the 43-year-old shopowner with an anaesthetic spray before making away with the jewelry.
Local police are investigating the theft.
 Foreign national, member of international migrant-smuggling ring, arrested, 26 illegal migrants detainedAn Afghani national, belonging to an international migrant-smuggling ring, was arrested by police near Elefsina on Saturday, and 26 illegal migrants were detained, after the migrants were found hidden in the man's van.
Officers from the Attica Police alien's bureau spotted the truck and made the arrests at the Elefsina toll post, while two more ring members are wanted.
Acting on a tip-off, police spotted the van as it was nearing the toll post, and a search of the vehicle turned up the 26 illegal migrants, which the man was to drop off at a coastal region near Astakos, Aetoloakarnania prefecture, and from there on to Italy.
The man, according to police, is part of an organised ring that has been active for a large period of time in the smuggling of migrants into EU countries, for payment.
 Five foreign nationals arrested on drug chargesFive foreign nationals -- three from Albania and one each from Pakistan and Bangladesh -- were arrested by Attica Police narcotics squad officers on Saturday in the Ilion district for drug dealing.
After a lengthy investigation, police spotted the suspects and arrested them in a coordinated operation after 33.874 kilos of cannabis were found in their possession.
Police seized the drugs, as well as 1,260 euros in cash, two precision scales and six cell phones also found in the suspects' possession.
According to police, the two suspects from Pakistan and Bangladesh had purchased two kilos of cannabis from the two Albanians, which they intended to sell on the streets of Athens.
In a separate incident, a 26-year-old Greek was arrested in Peristeri after 6.75 kilos of cannabis were found in his car. Police seized the cannabis and the car, as well as 4,260 euros in cash also found in the suspect's car.
 Super League resultsGames played for the Super League over the weekend had the following results: Xanthi-Levadiakos Livadia 1-1, PAOK Thessaloniki-Atromitos Athens 3-1, AEK Athens-PAS Yiannina 2-1, Asteras Tripoli-Aris Thessaloniki 1-0 and Panetolikos Agrinio-OFI Crete 1-0.
The games between Ergotelis Crete-Doxa Drama, Panionios Athens-Panathinaikos Athens and Kerkyra-Olympiacos Piraeus will be played later on Sunday evening.
 Overcast, windy on MondayOvercast and windy weather is forecast for most parts of the country on Monday, with winds of up to 5 beaufort velocity, and sporadic storms in the northwest.
Athens will be overcast in the morning, with northwesterly winds of 3-4 beaufort velocity and temperatures ranging from 7C to 9C. The same in Thessaloniki, with variable winds of 3-4 beaufort and temperatures ranging from 4C to 14C.
 Athens' Sunday newspapers at a glanceThe new round of the European Commission (EC), European Central Bank (ECB) and International Monetary Fund (IMF) 'troika' negotiations with the Greek government that begins on Monday, the ongoing negotiations on the PSI and the adverse condition of the country's social security funds, which has sparked speculation of more reductions to pensions and the one-off retirement benefit, were the main front-page items in Athens' newspapers on Sunday.
AVGHI: "Long night (EU summit) - Memorandum recipe being extended to all of Europe".
AVRIANI: "Planned postponement of elections for two years".
ELEFTHEROS TYPOS: "One more salary (from annual incomes) being cut".
ELEFTHEROTYPIA: "Troika raid, with new recipe".
ETHNOS: "SDOE (finance ministry's economic crimes squad) thunderbolts over the 'golden escapes' of the prominent - Preferential treatment of prominent individuals owing taxes to the state by judges".
KATHIMERINI: "Dramatic appeal by (former President of the Republic Costis) Stephanopoulos - Country doesn't need elections but a capable government that will work to bring Greece out of the dangers it is facing".
NIKI: "10 measures further scissor benefits, salaries and pensions".
PROTO THEMA (weekly): "500,000 Greeks transferred their money abroad".
REALNEWS: "Final 'gift' to private sector".
RIZOSPASTIS: "The people's counter-attack must be directed at toppling the rule of the monopolies".
TO ARTHRO: "The euro and Greece being saved".
TO PARON: "Gambling up to March".
TO VIMA: "Proton, the bank of the 'close friends'."
VRADYNI: "Pensions at the edge of the cliff".
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