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Athens News Agency: Daily News Bulletin in English, 14-03-10
From: The Athens News Agency at <http://www.ana.gr/>Monday, 10 March 2014 Issue No: 4605
 Greece will go to Eurogroup with the issue of banks solved, FinMin source saysGreece will go to the Eurogroup having solved the issue with the banks, a senior Finance ministry official said after the first phase of negotiations between the government and the troika of was completed.
The same official expressed his optimism that all negotiations with the troika will have been completed by next Sunday, March 16.
Regarding the banks, he said, Saturday's meeting between Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras and IMF representative in the troika of lenders to Greece Poul Tomsen was rather critical as Tomsen was forced to retreat from his initial extreme positions and accept the implementation of equal terms between Greek and other European banks.
Another government official said that the fact that two systemic banks announced they would proceed with a share capital increase also played a key role.
 Greece needs a smart policy mix, European Parliament president Schulz saysBERLIN (AMNA/F. Karaviti)
Greece needs a smart policy mix and not unilateral austerity, European Parliament president Martin Schulz said in an exclusive interview to ANA-MPA, in Berlin, on Sunday.
Regarding his candidacy for the presidency of the European Commission, he said his top priorities is justice and combatting youth unemployment.
Schultz underlined that the progressive forces of Greece should remain united adding that he is addressing all Greeks who want a Europe of social justice.
During his speech at the two day "Olive Tree" conference which took place in Athens at the weekend Mr Schulz said that he wants to change Europe's direction towards a European Union "where the citizen comes first, not the bureaucracy, but with more democracy and more solidarity,
 Greece will exit the crisis stronger, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso saysEmployment is a top priority for Europe, that is why growth is needed, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said at the 6th European Summit of Regions and Cities, held at the Concert Hall in Athens.
Barroso also acknowledged that Greeks have been asked to make a lot of sacrifices, but the most difficult period is behind. "Greece has a primary surplus this year for the first time in sixty years, and the surplus will be even bigger in 2015," he said. "We had to deal first with deficits and banks, because we got our lesson that growth with debt is not sustainable. I am convinced that the future of Europe and Greece will be good," Barroso added.
The European Commission president said he has confidence in the potential of Greece, despite the stereotypes and prejudices. "From laggard in EU funds absorption, Greece is now among the first, with the help of the Task Force. Greece is doing better in public administration, tax evasion, and citizen-state relations," he said.
 PASOK leader Venizelos will handle the issue of incompatibility between MP and MEP candidatesPASOK leader Evangelos Venizelos will discuss with Prime Minister Antonis Samaras the issue of incompatibility between MP and MEP candidates, according to a PASOK statement.
The political council of PASOK convened on Sunday on the sidelines of the "Olive Tree" conference and authorized Venizelos to handle the matter in consultation with Samaras and after getting the opinion of the party's absent members regarding a possible legislation on the issue of incompatibility.
New Democracy has, however, expressed its intention to deal with the issue without bringing forward legislation.
 Defence Minister Avramopoulos to meet with Montenegro's counterpartDefence Minister of Montenegro Milica Pejanovic-Djuricic is paying an official visit to Greece on Monday, following Greek Defence Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos' invitation.
Delegations of both countries will hold talks at the Defence ministry, at 12:00. A private meeting between Avramopoulos and Pejanovic-Djuricic will follow as well as statements to the press.
 Euro elections is a battle of ideas, PASOK leader saysEuro elections is a battle of ideas, a battle between the Party of European Socialists and the European People's Party, for another Europe, PASOK leader Evangelos Venizelos said at a conference on Sunday adding that the Socialist Party is mainly responsible to present a new image for Europe.
Referring to Martin Schulz, who is the Party of European Socialists (PES) candidate designate for European Commission President, Venizelos said that he knows better than anyone else the problems and priorities of people. "It is important to understand that this is a battle of ideas," he noted.
Venizelos underlined that "PASOK had been the largest party in percentage of votes for many years ... but now it is paying the price of the crisis, the responsibility and the difficult decisions."
He also stressed that without government stability and tough decisions, Greece will not manage to complete the program, it will not stay in the eurozone, and it will not be an equal country.
 FM Venizelos to meet with French Senate president on MondayGovernment Vice-President and Foreign Minister Evangelos Venizelos will meet with the President of the French Senate Jean Pierre Bel on Monday, according to a Foreign ministry announcement.
The meeting will take place at the Foreign ministry, at 15.30.
 PES candidate for European Commission presidency Martin Schulz promises to change Europe's directionThe two-day "Olive Tree" conference was completed on Sunday with a speech by Martin Schulz, the Party of European Socialists' (PES) candidate designate for European Commission President, and the ratification of the "Olive Tree-Democratic Party" declaration.
"I am here because I want to change Europe's direction. I want a Europe that cares for its citizens, where the citizen comes first, not the bureaucracy, but with more democracy and more solidarity," Schulz said.
"To correct injustice, we need a Europe that will focus on the benefit of many," he said adding that this cannot be achieved if we are divided. "It is time all social-democrats contributed in the same direction for the good of Greece and Europe," Schulz said.
The European Parliament President underlined that these elections will affect both Greece and Brussels as all decisions taken there have a direct impact on Greece. Schulz said that he has the opportunity to become head of the European Commission if the European Left, united and not divided, supports him.
 SYRIZA's comment on political developmentsThe government is directing the "success story 2" replacing the old one, which has failed, with a new one and with the help of all the pillars supporting the memorandum and German Chancellor Angela Merkel in the leading role, main opposition SYRIZA said in a statement on Sunday.
"They are trying to hide the harsh reality the majority of society is experiencing as a result of the austerity policy, presenting a new 'beautiful world' but they are preparing new measures and new memoranda after the elections," SYRIZA noted.
However, they cannot fool anyone. The countdown to leave government and memoranda has begun, they added.
 Main opposition leader Tsipras' schedule on MondayMain opposition Radical Left Coalition (SYRIZA) leader will visit Dublin on Monday, according to a party announcement.
At 11:30, Tsipras will visit Darndale and meet with representatives of the local community and social organizations to discuss the impact of austerity on vulnerable groups, especially young people.
At 13:00, he will meet with Ireland's Socialist Party MEP Paul Murphy, at the offices of the European Parliament in Dublin, and with the left forum at 16:00.
At 19:00, Tsipras will speak on the international conference "Challenging the rule of the troika, transforming Europe" co-organized by the University of Dublin and the European Network Transform! Europe.
 Opinion poll shows SYRIZA's lead over New DemocracyMain opposition SYRIZA leads by 2.5 percent over New Democracy (ND), according to an opinion poll conducted by Kappa Research for VIMA newspaper.
According to the poll results for Attica prefecture, SYRIZA was leading with 20.1 percent, followed by New Democracy with 17.6 percent, ultra-right Golden Dawn (Chryssi Avghi) with 7.2 percent, the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) with 6.3 percent, the newly established Potami party with 5.9 percent, PASOK with 4.0 percent, Independent Greeks with 3.5 percent and Democratic Left (DIMAR) with 2.2 percent. The unidentified vote was 23.9 percent.
In Central Macedonia, New Democracy leads by 3.9 percent over SYRIZA. More specifically, New Domcracy gets 21.3 percent and SYRIZA 17.4, while the unidentified vote was 24.1 percent.
 Super League resultsPanathinaikos beat Aris by 4-1 in a match played over the weekend for the 28th round of the Greek soccer Super League.
In other action:
OFI-PAS Yiannena 1-1
Xanthi-Asteras Tripoli 0-1
Apollon Smyrnis-Platanias 3-1
Standings after 28 weeks of play:
1. Olympiakos 74
2. PAOK 58
- Atromitos Athens 58
4. Panathinaikos Athens 53
5. Asteras Tripoli 51
6. Panthrakikos 37
7. PAS Yiannena 36
8. OFI Crete 35
9. Panetolikos 34
10. Kalloni Mytilini 33 - 27 weeks
12. Ergotelis 32
14. Panionios 31
15. Apollon Smyrnis 29
16. Platanias Chania 25
17. Veria 24 - 27 weeks
18. Aris Thessaloniki 19
 Cloudy and rainy on MondayCloudy and rainy weather is forecast in most parts of Greece on Monday, with snow on higher ground. Moderate to strong winds, from main northerly directions, ranging from 5-7 Beaufort. The temperature will drop to between 3C and 15C. Cloudy weather with rain and storms in Attica, with temperatures between 7C and 11C. Same in Thessaloniki, with temperatures from 4C to 10C.
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