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Antenna: News in English (AM), 97-08-19

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From: Antenna Radio <> - email:

News in English, 19/08/97


  • The Ecumenical Patriarch's call for smooth relations between Greece and Turkey.
  • Britain's stiff response to Turkish-held Cyprus's attempt to meddle in EU affairs.
  • Lady Di takes a summer time-out in Greece


Ecumenical orthodox patriarch Vartholomeos spent the weekend visiting Greek islands. Vartholomeos brought with him a message of peace and understanding. He said he hopes that Greece and Turkey can continue to work at improving their relations.

Welcomed like a head of state in Chios Saturday, ecumenical patriarch Vartholomeos said a mass at the island's metropolitan cathedral.

Afterwards, he expressed his hope that relations between Greece and Turkey will continue to improve.

He urged everyone to "pray and work for the ideals of peace, love, and creative cooperation between neighbouring countries".

The patriarch was welcomed with all the Byzantine formalities at the historic New Monastery on the island.

Vartholomeos said a mass at the monastery, built in the year 1045 by the Emperor Constantine.

The patriarch visited Chios because it's one of 35 metropolitan diocese in the so called "new territories". One of four diocese in Greece which belong to the ecumenical patriarchate, but administration over which the patriarchate has let the church in Greece have since 1928.

Vartholomeos said he had come to quote "renew old, strong, historic bonds" between those diocese and the patriarchate.

The patriarch was welcomed by thousands of people at the port town on the island of Inousses. The mayor declared him an honorary citizen of the town.

This small island has produced many big names in the Greek shipping world, and thousands of seamen. At the Square of Vanished Sailors, Vartholomeos held a memorial service for all the seamen who have been lost at sea.

At the new stadium under construction in the town, the patriarch planted an olive tree - symbol of peace. It's also the symbol of good olvies of course - the patriarch asked in jest that the first harvest from the tree be sent to him.

Vartholomeos has been anticipating an invitation to visit Athens. That invitation hasn't been forthcoming yet because of the poor health of archbishop of Greece Seraphim.

Before returning to Constantinople Tuesday, Vartholomoes will address the Greek people.


The British government has issued a stiff reply to Turkey and its occupation authorities in northern Cyprus, for trying to interfere in the European Union's decisions.

Turkish-Cypriot leader Raouf Denktash refused to accept UN proposals designed to reunite Cyprus last week, arguing that first, the EU must withdraw its invitation to Cyprus to start talks to join the EU. Denktash says that if the EU doesn't withdraw that invitation, due to be finalised in December, then talks on Cypriot reunification cannot go ahead.

British Cyprus envoy David Honey's response is that Turkey and Turkish-held Cyprus have no right to tell the EU what it can and cannot do.

And he renewed the EU's commitment to begin talks with Cyprus next year.

After the stalemate in the UN talks over Cyprus last week, US Cyprus envoy Richard Holbrooke is expected to begin his mediation efforts.

But for now, he won't be visiting Cypurs. Instead, he is sending Thomas Miller, attached to the US em bassy in Athens, to Nicosia and Ankara next month. Miller will also meet with Greek officials in Athens.


The Albanian government is calling for closer cooperation with Greece in patrolling their common border.

For months, Greece has been bothered by marauding bands that sometimes cross the border and commit crimes in northern Greece.

The Albanian request comes just several days after a serious episode in Grammos, when a Greek police patrol arrested four Albanians who had illegally entered the country. Following the arrests, the police were shot at by other Albanians. Returning the fire, the police killed one of their assailants, and shortly afterwards arrested three more.

In an announcement, the Albanian foreign ministry says it is determined to maintain good relations of cooperation and understanding with Greece.

The Greek authorities remain on alert following the Grammos incident. Many residents along the border say they live in fear of the criminal elements.


Britain's Lady Diana is no stranger to the news, but news of her exact whereabouts was hard to come by over the weekend, when she dropped in on Greece for a short stay, taking in the sun and sea.

People at Athens international airport were surprised to see the former princess of Wales get off a private jet Saturday afternoon.

The former wife of Prince Charles shot into the headlines again recently following reports of an affair with Dodi Al Fayed, whose family owns the famed Harrod's Department Store in London.

During her stay in Greece, Antenna picked up her trail on the island of Spetses and in Kapsari, Kithira.

One young woman was thrilled when she saw Lady Di visiting the shops in Spetses. The young admirer says she was, well, just like a lady: beautiful, simple, and with a smile ready for everyone.

Diana's movements have been cloaked in the utmost secrecy. It was thought that she had boarded a lear jet for the island of Cephalonia Sunday, but she was videoed swimming at Kyparissi beach near Monevasia in th Peloponese.

Then, she was spotted Monday on the island of Hydra. She walked through the streets of the town streets, and was photographed while on the island.

There were rumours Monday that she would visit the island of Inousses, courtesy of the millionaire Laimos, whose wife Chrysanthi is a good friend of the Lady.

A number of Laimos boats had been moved out of the port, to make way, it was speculated, for Lady Di's yacht.

Monday there were hordes of reporters and photographers waiting to see if she'd show up.


The 29th anual world seismology conference kicked off in Thessaloniki Monday. Over the next 10 days, some 1200 scientists from all over the world will discuss a number of earthquake-related issues.

The conference is being held in Thessaloniki because of the high levels and uniquness of the seismic activity in and around Greece.

Already, seismologists have been taken on tours of heavy quake areas.

Host seismologist Vassilis Papazachos says they've visited the fault-line in Kozani, in northern Greece, and that many more such visits will follow.

Papazachos says people should expect a large shaker in southern Greece some time in the not- too-distant-future. There hasn't been a big quake in the area for 35 years, so he says it's logical too be prepared for one.


Doing business with the tax man will soon become as easy as using an ATM card. Starting next year, every Greek tax payer will be issued with a plastic card - like those used in Automatic Teller Machines.

The cards will be plugged into special machines in the nation's tax offices, and the user will be able to conduct all his or her taxes, or get a full readout of his or her standing with the tax people.

Giorgos Roumeliotis of the tax office says any business someone has to conduct with the tax people, whether it stems from buying a car or selling some land, will be done the easy way.

The cards will contain more than just tax information concerning the user. Plugged in, it will also reveal the holder's name, age, and place of birth.

It is hope the cards will help the tax office in its war against tax evasion, as well as be a convenience for taxpayers.


One other tax note: the tax office hopes to have sent out all the cheques to people expecting returns on their 1996 taxes by the end of September.

On to sports, and water polo. At the European Water Athletics Championships in Spain, both the Greek men and the Greek women have secured berths in the polo quarterfinals.

The Greek men get there, even if just by a goal. Dimitris Mazis scores against Hungary with 21- seconds to go. Hungary still wins it 6-5, but that's of no interest to Greece.

What is of interest is that with Mazis's tally, Greece nudges Germany out of the final quarterfinal slot with a one-goal better tournament scoring differential.

The Greek men meet Croatia in the quarterfinal Tuesday night.

Greece's women have also done well enough to reach the final 8 of the water polo tournament. They'll be up against Spain there, and are given good odds of reaching the semifinals.


In soccer, and early days Greek cup action, there were a number of games over the weekend.

Checking out the results involving first-division teams, or teams in the first division last year,

Marko upset first-division Doxa Drama by a comfortable margin. Arta held first-division Aris to a draw. And Edessaikos had no trouble with Preveza.

The return legs of those match ups are slated for August 24th. The teams with the best two-game goal differential advances to the next round.


Anyone on the island of Syros these days will have the opportunity to take in an exhibition of rare paintings of ships.

The canvasses depicting 18 sea-going vessels from the 19th and early 20th centuries come from the collection of Meletis Methenitis.

All the ships in these paintings have one thing in common: they were registered in Syros.

Apart from the paintings, visitors also have the chance to see objects from old ships on display.

This collection is unique in Greece, which explains why so many people have been to see the exhibition.

Yiannis Dekavalas, mayor of Ermoupoli, the island's main port and town, thanked Methenits at the opening of the "Old Ships of Syros" exhibit.

Methenitis, who's been collecting art for three decades, also thanked the town for helping make the exhibition possible.

"I love your island", he said.

The collector's infatuation with the island is in evidence elsewhere: he has bought an old house, the Dellegratsia, in Ermoupoli, and turned it into a museum of everyday objects from the turn of the century.

© ANT1 Radio 1997

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