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Antenna: News in English (PM), 98-01-19

Antenna News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: Antenna Radio <http://www.antenna.gr> - email: antenna@compulink.gr

Last Updated: Monday, 19-Jan-98 13:56:04


  • [01] Terrorists Review
  • [02] Turkey Review
  • [03] Burns Review
  • [04] Agia Sophia Review
  • [05] Horn Review

  • [01] Terrorists Review

    Nikos Maziotis, arrested after his fingerprint was found on a bomb planted at the development ministry on December 6th, has been charged with illegal possession of explosives. That bomb never went off.

    After following Maziotis for nearly 40 days, police arrested him last Tuesday morning.

    Anti-terrorist experts are sifting through evidence culled from the house of 27 year old Nikos Maziotis. He was arrested in a dawn raid on his home Tuesday.

    Police found three firearms, explosives, and masks. They also found an army canteen, similar to the one in which a December 10th bomb at the development minister's office was placed.

    They are now trying to establish whether or not the three guns found at Maziotis's house have been used in robberies or other criminal acts.

    They've already ruled out that the guns were used in past terrorist hits.

    Maziotis has been charged with manufacturing, possessing, and distributing bombs; the attempted bombing of the development ministry on December 6th; and with possession of firearms.

    Charges he denies. The three guns found in his

    house aren't is, he told the prosecutor; nor are the explosives. He has never manufactured a bomb or planted one.

    The police launched their operation after following Maziotis for over a month after finding his fingerprint on the December 6th bomb.

    During that time, they gathered information concerning the 27-year-olds contacts. The police pulled a further 15 people in for questioning the same day they picked up Maziotis - all were later released without charge.

    Apart from trying to trace the history of the guns found in the home of Maziotis, a known anarchist, investigators are also examining political documents and diaries found there.

    Police specialists are trying to see if there are any similarities between the wording used by Maziotis in things he's written, and telephone statements that have been sent to the press by various terrorist groups taking responsibility for bombings.

    The December 6th bomb that didn't go off at the development ministry was planted by a group calling itself the Anarchist Urban Guerrillas. To date, that is the organisation's only appearance.

    But four days after that failed attack, a bomb exploded at the office of the development minister.

    The Combatant Guerrilla Faction claimed responsibility for that blast, the group's sixth attack.

    In both cases, the reason given for the bombings was the government's decision to reopen mines in northern Greece.

    That and literature found at Maziotis's home, lead the police to suspect a connection between the two small terrorist organisations.

    Maziotis is well known to the police: he refused to serve in the military on the grounds that he was a conscientious objector; and was arrested during disturbances in Athens in 1995.

    Of note is the fact that Maziotis has not been charged with illegal group activities, meaning the police don't have enough to directly implicate him as a member of a terrorist organisation.

    The 27-year-old's court arraignment was Friday.

    [02] Turkey Review

    Turkey has announced three weeks of exercises in different parts of the Aegean from the 2nd to the 25th of January.

    Greece has been bothered by some of the areas Turkey has said it will hold manoeuvres in, either because they infringe upon Greek airspace, or cut off traffic in the Aegean.

    Defense Minister Akis Tsochatzopoulos stated unequivocally that Greece is entitled to 10 miles of airspace from its shores.

    Tsochatzopoulos responded to comments by US ambassador to Greece Nicholas Burns. Burns said that Washington recognizes only a six-mile airspace limit.

    The air space limit issue came to the fore just over a week ago, when Turkey scheduled war games in the Aegean, many of them within Greece's 10- mile limit.

    Tsochatzopoulos said Greece's ten-mile position has been known since 1932 and is not negotiable. The treaties of Lausanne and Paris clearly define Greece's sovereign rights, he explained, and Greece will respond to anyone who questions or threatens those rights accordingly.

    "Turkey", said Tsochatzopoulos, "is threatening not only Greece's sovereign rights, but also regional peace and stability and international law".

    Things were quiet in the Aegean Monday, as Turkish ships and aircraft failed to hold scheduled exercises between the Greek islands of Ikaria and Patmos. Tuesday, however, was a different story all together.

    Turkish fighters flew less than six miles off the coast of the islands of Chios and Mytilene and the Dodecanese.

    Late in the afternoon, Turkish jets were chased away by Greek fighters as they tried to approach the helicopter carrying the Greek defence minister.

    On Wednesday, Turkish aircraft made 45 violations of Greek airspace, over the islands of Limnos, Chios and the Dodecanese. They were chased out by Greek fighters.

    US ambassador to Greece Nicholas Burns tried to smooth over the ripples caused by his statement that the US recongnises only six miles of air space.

    Downplaying the matter, Burns said the US is aware that Greece has claimed ten miles since 1931, and the issue does not constitute a difference between Greece and the US.

    Burns says the US doesn't tie the issue of Greek sovereignty to the 6 or 10 mile issue.

    For example, he notes that the rocks of Kalogiri in the central Aegean are Greek, and should be respected as such. Turkey tried to question Greek sovereignty over the rocks by scheduling military manoeuvres there.

    Burns believes the airspace extent is not the main issue. The important thing is for Greece and Turkey to work together at reducing tension in the region. "Obviously", he concludes, "sovereignty must be respected".

    On Friday, Turkish fishing boats tried to approach the Greek rocks of Imia for the second time in ten days - only to be turned away by the Greek coast guard.

    Commenting on the latest episode off Imia, at which a Greek warship and a Turkish coast guard were present but inactive, deputy defence minister Dimitris Apostolakis said he doesn't believe the fishermen were holding a dress rehearsal for a more serious provocation. Just an attempt by Turkish fishermen to ruffle Greek feathers.

    Alternate foreign minister Giorgos Papandreou

    thinks the Greek government's policy of keeping a cool head in the face of Turkish provocations is the best way of dealing with Ankara.

    [03] Burns Review

    US Ambassador to Greece, Nicholas Burns spoke at a reception held by the American Hellenic Chamber of Commerce last Wednesday.

    During his speech he called the Cyprus problem and Greek-Turkish differences among the most complex issues in the world.

    He then urged Greece and Turkey to take bold initiatives to settle the differences between them.

    "Peace will not be possible...steps...current impasses".

    And on a lighter note wrapping up this week's report, the newly appointed American ambassador showed during his speech at the American Hellenic Chamber of Commerce, that he's getting used to doing as the Athenians do, rooting for a local sports team.

    "I must confess...fan of Panathinaikos".

    [04] Agia Sophia Review

    A Greek sexton was found murdered in a chapel near the cathedral of Agia Sophia in Constantinople last Monday. A number of valuable relgious items had been stolen.

    Smoke and flames coming out of the small chapel alerted people near the chapel that something was wrong.

    Forcing open the iron gate outside the chapel, employees of the Orthodox Patriarchate assisted the fire department in putting the fire out.

    The body of sexton Vassilis Haviarīpoulos was discovered shortly thereafter, his skull broken by assailants.

    The sexton only opened the chapel every Monday, to distribute holy water alleged to have therapeutic powers to both Christians and Muslims.

    After the murder, icons and a Bible, all containing silver, were missing.

    Condemning the murder, Greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas noted that in all the attacks on properties belonging to the ecumenical orthodox patriarchate, the Turkish police haven't found even a single clue pertaining to the culprits.

    In recent years, there have been bombing attacks at the patriarchate compound.

    After a delay of 24 hours, the Turkish government expressed its regret at the death of the 73 year old sexton.

    Turkish foreign ministry spokesman Netzati Outkan said Wednesday he believes the perpetrators will be arrested.

    Greece is asking Turkey to launch a full investigation of the latest crime.

    Turkish police have pulled people in for questioning, but so far have no leads.

    It appears though, that a gang of Turkish thieves has targetted small orthodox chapels which contain items of value, such as the silver plated icons stolen from the chapel where Haviarīpoulos was killed.

    Alternate Foreign Minister George Papandreou said the Turkish government is responsible for the safety of the patriarchate and the Greek minority in Constantinople.

    [05] Horn Review

    For nearly six decades, he graced the stage and the big screen, speaking to generations of Greeks. Dimitris Horn, born in 1921, died Friday afternoon, following a long illness.

    His passing brings the curtain down on an era.

    The acting legend will be greatly missed.

    "Actor means light". Those words sum up the significance of Dimitris Horn to the Greek stage and screen in the post-war period.

    He brought many characters to life, reflecting in his roles the lives, thoughts, and feelings of thousands of Greeks.

    And every role he played made an impact on him.

    "I live with the nightmares of all the roles I've ever played", he said at the end of his life.

    "This neighborhood", the actor says, "is a cage for all of us. No one really lives what he'd like to, because a dream only lasts a moment.

    All the other moments are despair. On this road, we're born, live, and die".

    On this road, Dimitris Horn acted.

    At the tender age of 16, Horn went to the Royal Theatre to learn his art.

    He made his stage debut in 1940. In 1944 he made his first appearance with another great, Mary Aroni.

    Horn was distinguished by his delicate sensibility and frankness.

    In the last years of his life, his acting and public appearances became rare. And when he gave interviews, he was often sarcastic in talking about himself.

    At one public appearance, he explained that his family came from a long line of pirates.

    Horn stood a pioneer in Greek cinema, at the vanguard of an elite pleiade of actors set apart by their talent and energy.

    One of the other bright stars in that pleiade was Elly Lambetti. Coupled on the silver screen, she and Horn were the ideal couple to generations of cinema-goers.

    And they will remain so, long after the final curtain call has come.

    (c) ANT1 Radio 1998

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