Athens News Agency: News in English (AM), 98-01-05
NEWS IN ENGLISH
Athens, Greece, 05/01/1998 (ANA)
- Vigilance in the Aegean as Turkish military exercise continues
- New tax legislation in parliament on Wednesday
- Foreign ministry denies confusion regarding territorial waters
- Sarande leaflet threatens Greeks of Albania
- Premier to send letter to PASOK members
- Illegal Iraqi immigrants arrested, body of missing woman found
- Two killed at 'Diana' papermill explosion
- Huge arms cache found at American woman's home in Pieria
- Tax on bank profits from sale of shares to remain in place
- Vintage cars circuit through Athens streets
- Greek First Division soccer results
- Foreign exchange
NEWS IN DETAIL
Vigilance in the Aegean as Turkish military exercise continues
The Greek armed forces were cautiously monitoring the Turkish air and naval
exercise in progress in the Aegean, and are ready to take all necessary
measures -such as interceptions of aircraft- in case the exercise is
carried out in areas where there is no relevant entitlement, Defence
Undersecretary Dimitris Apostolakis said after a meeting on Saturday.
The Greek Civil Aviation Authority (YPA) on December 28, 1997, described as
illegal a Turkish notam, designating eight areas in the Aegean for the
exercise, planned for January 2-25, as illegal and invalid, as three of
them included areas of the Athens Flight Information Region (FIR).
Mr. Apostolakis noted, nevertheless, that activity related to the exercise,
could, up to that point, be described as low key.
At another meeting at the foreign ministry on Saturday, chaired by Foreign
Undersecretary Yiannos Kranidiotis, officials of the defence and foreign
ministries and YPA examined the unfolding situation and coordinated their
activities on the matter.
Calm also prevailed yesterday, second day of the exercise in the Aegean,
while Greek armed forces maintained their readiness to deal with any
eventuality. Today is considered a crucial day as the exercise is expected
to unfold north of the island of Lesvos, and between Hios and Andros, areas
which the Turks have unilaterally engaged for the exercise.
New tax legislation in parliament on Wednesday
National Economy and Finance Minister Yiannos Papantoniou will table the
government's new tax legislation in Parliament on Wednesday, according to
The discussion of the bill by the parliamentary committee will begin on
January 12 and the bill will be then brought before the Parliament for
debate and vote.
Foreign ministry denies confusion regarding territorial waters
The foreign ministry issued an announcement yesterday in which it stressed
that "the extent of the territorial waters for purposes of aviation and the
control thereof has been fixed at ten (10) nautical miles from the coast of
the State by law in 1931".
The announcement was sparked by some reports in the press which claimed a
"blunder" in a Civil Aviation Authority (YPA) document, supposedly
referring to Greek territorial waters as being three (3) nautical
The announcement said that a dispatch containing Greece's reactions over
the current Turkish military exercises in the Aegean was compiled by YPA in
cooperation with the foreign ministry, and there was no mistake in
As a consequence, the announcement added, any misinterpretation or
confusion with any other regulation of 1931, which may have referred to
territorial waters as being then three (3) nautical miles, was not
The foreign ministry concluded by saying that the government dealt with the
issue very carefully and responsibly as it was required and in cooperation
with all relavent authorities, and that it was not appropriate for such a
crucial issue to be the subj ect of petty partisan expediency.
Sarande leaflet threatens Greeks of Albania
An anonymous leaflet threatening the Greeks of Albania and the Orthodox
church circulated in Sarande on New Year's Day, according to reports.
The leaflet called on the residents of the city to "resist" the ethnic
Greeks of the region and "their agents, the Communists", saying that they
wanted to "destroy Albania".
The leaflet warned that "the time of venegeance was approaching".
The leaflet was condemned by ten political parties which thanked the Greek
people and the Greek government for its assistance and support of economic
and political reforms in Albania.
Premier to send letter to PASOK members
The major issues that will concern the government, as well as the ruling
PASOK party, in 1998 will be the focus of a letter by Prime Minister Costas
Simitis to be sent to PASOK members within the coming days.
The premier will refer in his letter to the framework of choices that will
make Greece a strong and modern state, such as the upgrading of the
country's international position and role, as well as equal participation
in procedures for European unificati on and Economic and Monetary Union
(EMU), defend sovereign rights and the Greek initiative for peace and
cooperation in the Balkans.
In the domestic front such choices relate to regional and production
restructuring, rapid development, modernisation and reform in the
However, Mr. Simitis notes in his letter that this real capture of the
future presupposes a revitalised and organised PASOK party that will be
open to social and productive forces, and which will decide on crucial
policy decisions and will impement that policy in all areas and institutions.
Illegal Iraqi immigrants arrested, body of missing woman found
Ten Iraqi illegal immigrants were arrested on Saturday on the island of
Samos in the eastern Aegean, less than 48 hours after the New Year' s
arrest of another 24.
According to statements by the Kurdish-origin Iraqi citizens two Turkish
smugglers ferried them to the island from mainland Turkey on a small wooden
boat from Kusadasi.
The Iraqi also said that hundreds more were waiting to come to Samos a fact
that drove up the smugglers' fee to $2,000 per person.
Meanwhile, the body of a 31-year-old illegal immigrant missing since
Thursday was dragged from the waters of the Evros River on Saturday.
Police said the woman, identified as Iraqi national Nean Kahaz, was one of
the three people reported missing when a boat in which they were being
transported illegally from the Turkish side of the river to Greece
Kahaz was one of a group of 28 put ashore on an islet in the middle of the
Two killed at `Diana` papermill explosion
Two people were killed and four wounded by an explosion at the "Diana"
papermill at the Xanthi prefecture Maggana village early Saturday
Equipment opperator Stephanos Draskidis, 28 was killed instantaneously,
while electrician Theophanis Kamiloglou died en route to the Xanthi
The explosion sent pieces of the factory's boiler a great distance and
caused a fire, which took several hours to be extinguished.
According to the fire department's early estimates the damage to the
factory is in the 10ths of millions of drachmas. In an announcement in
relation to the accident, the Thrace-based DIANA papermill said that two
hours after the explosion, the fire that followed had been put out owing to
the plant's fire protection system.
It further said that the old plant will be in operation in a week's time,
while the new plant will be ready to operat normally in one month.
It added that both plants are insured and that available stocks can cover
the market's needs for two months.
Huge arms cache found at American woman's home in Pieria
An arms cache has been discovered by police in Dion, Pieria, in the home of
a 41-year-old American, the widow of criminal George Kaltsas who was found
dead with 20 gunshot wounds near Lamia last week in what appeared to be a
gangland killing, police said yesterday.
The Katerini security police located and seized quantities of anti-tank
rockets and launchers, machine guns, Kalashnikov rifles, hand grenades,
pistols and silencers, ammunition, masks and bullet-proof vests in a pig-
sty behind the home of 41-year-old A merican Donna Wilkins-Kaltsas.
A police spokesman told the ANA the weaponry had been smuggled into Greece
from Albania, and was mainly Russian and Chinese made. He also said 153
sticks of TNT (dynamite), "enough to blow up Mt. Olympus", had also been
confiscated, as well as 12 kilos of hashish and a small quantity of heroin.
Earlier, police arrested two Albanians, 20-year-old Skrendi Peirikliou and
27-year-old Ilir Rogi from Elbasan, who lived on Wilkins' grounds.
Police also found two Uzi's when they raided the house, believed to have
been stolen from the Greek police.
Police believe the weapons were smuggled into Greece in the fall after
George Kaltsas' brother, Vassilis Kaltsas, escaped from Corfu jail and fled
to Albania, with the help of the Albanian mafia and Greek accomplices.
Vassilis Kaltsas died in a car cras h in Halkidiki, northern Greece, last
Tax on bank profits from sale of shares to remain in place
A special tax levied on bank transactions for the sale of shares will
continue to apply, the Council of State ruled after examination of an
appeal by a bank for abolition of the tax on shares. The bank claimed that
the special tax on bank profits from the
sale of shares should be abolished since it could not be charged on share
buyers. However, the Council of State judged that the special tax could and
should be charched on share buyers and ruled that the regulation remain in
Vintage cars circuit through Athens streets
A circuit of vintage cars was organised yesterday in Athens by the Athens
Municipality and the Vintage Car Society (FILPA).
The rally, in which 180 antique cars took part, started from the Athens
Panathenian Stadium and went through a shceduled route in downtown Athens
and ended again at the stadium. Athens mayor Dimitris Avramopoulos said in
a statement to the press that it was his aspiration that the city of Atens
be turned into a more humane city, bearing elements reminded by the cars of
the 50s and 60s.
Greek First Division soccer results
AEK-OFI 3-0 Panahaiki-Olympiakos 1-2
Panathinaikos-Kalamata 1-0 Ethnikos-PAOK 0-1
Ionikos-Pyrgos 0-0 Heraklis-Panionios 1-0
Kavala-Apollon 0-2 Veria-Proodeftiki 2-2
Athinaikos-Xanthi 4-1 Standings-points:
AEK 43, Olympiakos 40 Panathinaikos 39, PAOK 34
Ionikos 32, Heraklis 27 OFI 24, Xanthi, Apollon 23
Panionios, Pyrgos 19
Fine weather with local scattered cloud is forecast for today throughout
the country. Athens will be sunny with few clouds and temperatures from 8-
15C. Same in Thessaloniki with tempereatures between 4-12C.
Friday's closing rates - buying US dlr. 282.621
Pound sterling 463.700 Cyprus pd 534.688
French franc 46.872 Swiss franc 192.656
German mark 156.805 Italian lira (100) 15.955
Yen (100) 214.371 Canadian dlr. 197.805
Australian dlr. 183.748 Irish Punt 402.117
Belgian franc 7.603 Finnish mark 51.763
Dutch guilder 139.123 Danish kr. 41.182
Swedish kr. 35.520 Norwegian kr. 38.252
Austrian sch. 22.290 Spanish peseta 1.852
Port. Escudo 1.535