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Antenna: News in English (AM), 97-08-05

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From: Antenna Radio <> - email:

News in English, 05/08/97


  • The world's top acts in the hunt for gold at the track and field championships in Athens.
  • Kostas Simitis cites the importance of the Greek- Turkish non-aggression pact.
  • And, jazzing it up in the summer.


The World Track and Field Championships kicked off in Athens Saturday.

Greek athletes, competing at home, have turned in some fine performances.

Lambros Papakostas has advanced to the javelin final, and Panagiotis Strou- bAkos has made it through to the quarterfinals in the men's 800 metres.

Greece also made a strong showing in the men and women's 100 metres, and the women's triple jump.


We'll have full report on how Greek athletes have done, and a round up from Athens Olympic stadium later on in our sports segment.

Greek prime minister Kostas Simitis hails the recently-signed Greek-Turkish non-aggression pact as an important step forward in relations between the two countries.

Greece and Turkey signed the accord a month ago following US mediation.

Simitis says the agreement should clear the way to the two countries resolving rights to the continental shelf in the Aegean.


As he and his wife left on their 2-week vacation on the island of Sifnos, prime minister Simitis was confident that the non-aggression pact with Turkey is very good news.

In an interview with Newsweek Magazine, Simitis and Turkish prime minister Mesout Gilmaz talk about what should follow the signing of that agreement.

Simitis believes the accord will allow the two nations to bring to a close an issue that has been unresolved for decades: rights to the continental shelf in the Aegean Sea, under which lie oil deposits.

The non-agression pact commits both sides to refraining from using military force against each other. It also commits them to respecting territorial rights in the Aegean. And to working out any differences peacefully.

In the Newsweek interview, Turkish prime minister Mesout Gilmaz says that his country must take a more compromising stand in its dealings with foreign countries.

In the same Newsweek piece, Simitis says Greece would like Turkey to state that it will take its claim to the Aegean isle of Imia to an international arbitrating body, if it wants to continue making that claim.

Last year, Turkey failed in a bid to seize the isle by staging a military landing on one of its rocks.

In Newsweek, Gilmaz says he's not ruling out the possibility of going to arbitration.

But in comments to the Washington Post, the Turkish prime minister shows a different face, claiming that the Aegean is a special case, and that Aegean issues cannot be resolved by international law.

In Newsweek, Simitis also touches on the Cyprus issue, restating Greece's view that Cyprus and Greek-Turkish differences are separate matters.

In his comments on Cyprus, Gilmaz repeats Turkey's threat NOT to allow Cyprus to instal Russian anti- aircraft missiles, scheduled to be in place next year. That prompted New Democracy to say that international law and equality are words not found in the Turkish foreign policy dictionary.


Tsochatzopoulos also gave Greek troops an official welcome, as they returned home from their three- month stay in Albania.

278 Greek soldiers who were deployed as part of the multinational peacekeeping force were greeted in Thessaloniki on Sunday by overjoyed family members.

One tearful woman seeing her son said, "I'm proud of being a Greek mother and that my son represented our country in Albania".

A young girl hugging her boyfriend said smiling "I'm very happy he's home. We'll make plans for the future now".

Tsochatzopoulos congratulated the men on successfully completing what he called a "highly important" mission. "Honoring your country", he continued, you forged relations of solidarity and friendship wherever you were deployed in Albania".

After the welcoming ceremony, a new missile system acquired from the US was shown off. The Defence minister said "the stronger the Greek armed forces are, the more certain we are that no one will dare question Greece's sovereign rights".

The multiple warhead system carry's a price tag of around 27 million dollars.


Over the weekend, the Greek defence minister called on Turkey to change its aggressive posture toward Greece in the Aegean.

Akis Tsochatzopoulos spoke during a visit to the island of Simi, just a few miles from the Turkish coast.

Tsochatzopoulos was there for the unveiling of a bust of Giorgos YennimatAs, a leading Pasok member and former cabinet minister, who died three years ago.

Tsochatzopoulos called on Turkey to respect the international treaties which codify Greece's rights to the Aegean islands.

"We can send our neighbours in Turkey a message not of conflict, but of persuasion", he added. "We can tell Turkey it's not in its interest to question Greece's sovereign rights or the status quo in the Aegean".

The ceremony in honour of YennimatAs, one of Greece's most popular politicians, was also attended by Democratic Movement leader Dimitris Tsovolas, former communist party secretary Grigoris FarAkos, and YennimatAs's daughter, Mary.


The first two weeks of August are the peak of the holiday season for Greeks, and this year is proving no exception.

A hundred and fifty thousand people left the mainland shores for the islands over the weekend in a mass exodus.

Travel agents and ports authorities say this year's exodus is the largest in the last three years. Most favoured destinations are the Cyclades islands to the south of Athens in the Aegean.

Over 20 thousand people travelled by air, others preferring trains, buses, and cars to get not only to the Cyclades but the Peloponese and the Ionian islands.

Since Friday, over 3 hundred thousand cars have left Athens for various points around the country.


Many people may be leaving Athens for the summer break, but the world's eyes are very much on the Greek capital, where the world track and field championships are being held.

For Greek athletes, the games are an opportunity to show the world their best before a home crowd.

world track

- Kostas GatsiOUdis put Greek colours into Tuesday's men's javelin final, with a throw of 83.32 metres.

Gatsioudis says he wants to do it for Greece, and says the home crowd is giving the team a boost. Lambros Papakostas will be representing Greece in Wednesday's high jump final. He easily cleared the bar at the qualifying height of 2.28 metres.

And Greece has more medal hopes from Panagiotis Stroubakos, who advanced to the quarterfinals of the men's 800 metres, with a run of 1 minute, 46 point 49 seconds.

There were no medals for Angelos Pavlakakis and Katerina Thanou, competing in the men's and women's 100 metre semifinals.

But both turned in fine performances in races won by American athletes, who hadn't won in the hundred metres at world-class level since the 1984 Olympics.

Pavlakakis turned in a time of 10.29 seconds in the semifinals, following up his Greek-record run of 10.11 in the preliminaries. Thanou ran the sprint in 11.34 seconds, in the women's semi.

Greece's Olga Vazdeki just missed picking up a medal in the women's triple jump. She finished just shy of the bronze with a jump of 14.62 metres, a Greek record.

For her parents, watching her anxiously on TV at home in Volos, that was more than good enough. Her mother said she worked hard to get where she is, and that finishing anywhere higher than seventh is a triumph.


Greek interest in coming days will be centred on the women's shot put, where it has two athletes competing; the men's 100 metres hurdles; the men's decathlon; and the women's 400 hundred metre hurdles.

Well, Canadian 100 metres world-record-holder Donovan Bailey may have missed the gold in the Athens one hundred metres, but he had golden words of support for the Greek capital's bid to host the 2004 summer Olympics.

The success or failure of Athens in hosting the current World track and field Championships will weigh heavily with the International Olympic Committee when it comes to making its final decision on 2004.

Bailey says Athens should get the Games. The city has a lot of history he explains, and deserves to host the Olympics.


Jazz saxophonist Yuri Vorontsof embellished a summer evening in Porto Heli with his musical notes.

The Russian musician gave a concert at the seaside resort Sunday night.

Vorontsof, also director of the Russian culture ministry, was accompanied by his compatriot and guitar virtuoso Alexei KostEEkof.

Their performance was the first in a series of concerts by different artists scheduled over the next three weeks.

Among the events will be six classical music concerts performed by a 40- piece orchestra.

© ANT1 Radio 1997

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