Athens News Agency: News in English (PM), 98-01-07
NEWS IN ENGLISH
Athens, Greece, 07/01/1998 (ANA)
- Turkish air space violations a mockery of agreement
- Athens calls on Turkey to deal with Kurdish problem
- Liani sued over slap
- Police break up heroin-trafficking ring
- 21 kilos of hash found
- Stowaways make good their escape
- Syrian embassy cars torched
- Foreign Exchange
NEWS IN DETAIL
Turkish air space violations a mockery of agreement
Greek government spokesman Dimitris Reppas said today that Turkish
violations of Greek air space during military exercises in the eastern
Aegean Tuesday essentially made an accord reached in Madrid last July and
another in 1988 meaningless.
Reppas was speaking after a formation of eight Turkish warplanes violated
Greek air space over the island of Lesvos early yesterday as Greece
celebrated Epiphany. Yesterday's violations followed similar violations on
Greece and Turkey have a previous agreement not to carry out military
exercises on religious or national holidays. Turkey is currently carrying
out a naval, sea and air exercise in the eastern Aegean, as well as a joint
exercise with the US and Israel in the eastern Mediterranean.
Calling Turkish policy "self-destructive", Reppas said Turkey's behaviour
only isolated it even further from Europe by continually creating problems
in the eastern Mediterranean region.
Asked to comment on the joint Turkey-US-Israel exercise, the spokesman
expressed the view that the "policy of axes" did not contribute to
consolidating continued stability, peace and good neighbourly relations.
"As a country, we have no problem (with Turkey's participation in this
exercise) as long as all procedures determined by international law are
observed. However, we are against the creation of axes," he said.
Meanwhile, in a statement to the ANA today, a US embassy official said
there was no question that the Kalogeri islets, situated in an area which
initially was to be included in the Turkish exercise, were under Greek
Defence Minister Akis Tsohatzopoulos said Greece would follow standard
procedures if Turkey violated Greece's air space between the islands of
Mykonos and Ikaria during tomorrow's phase of the exercise.
"Any Turkish aircraft that violates Greece's air space will be intercepted
immediately," said Tsohatzopoulos.
The region between Mykonos and Ikaria is included in Greece's national air
space. Turkish naval forces have access to sea lanes through the region.
Tsohatzopoulos was speaking after a meeting with Prime Minister Costas
Athens calls on Turkey to deal with Kurdish problem
Greece said today it was determined to work with its European Union
partners to find a way to deal with the problem of illegal immigration from
Turkey, as Greek police representatives met in Rome with EU experts.
"This is a major humanitarian problem," government spokesman Dimitris
Reppas said. "The Greek government believes that the European Union must
have a uniform and specific policy to deal with the problem."
"Greece is prepared to participate in any procedure which will assist in
dealing with the problem."
Reppas said Turkey was obliged to resolve its domestic Kurdish problem "by
economic and political means".
"Athens has for some time now stressed the problem to its partners," he
said, adding that the phenomenon of illegal immigration was one that hurt,
Authorities today began moving 250 Kurdish refugees from refugee accommodation
in the port city of Patras to Corinth, on the order of Public Order
Minister George Romeos.
The 250 Kurds, who had been placed in a disused Greek railways machine shop,
had been opposed to the move, and had threatened to go on hunger strike.
They agreed to be moved after a series of talks and meeting between their
representatives and Greek authorities who assured them that the new
accommodation was more satisfactory.
Liani sued over slap
A woman who slapped Dimitra Liani-Papandreou in a bookshop last October has
sued the late premier's widow and two of her bodyguards for illegally
detaining, threatening and insulting her, as well as physical abuse.
Anastasia Athini, a civil servant, walked up to Liani as the latter was
signing copies of her book "Ten years and 54 days", in which she relates
her life with the late Andreas Papandreou.
Athini slapped her across the face, later explaining her actions as being
prompted by Liani's behaviour, which she said reflected badly on Greek
Plainclothes police officers took Athini downstairs to a bookshop basement
where they detained her. Liani at one point went down to speak to
She includes the book's publishers Ilias and Panayota Livani, who also own
the bookshop where the incident took place, as well as journalist Markos
Mouzakis, who collaborated on the book.
Police break up heroin-trafficking ring
Police said today that they had broken up a five-member drug ring operating
out of Albania and confiscated 11 kilos of heroin.
Among those arrested are one woman and an Albanian actor, Victor Zousi.
Police are also seeking the alleged head of the ring, known only as
Experts said the heroin originated from Turkey and say that the drug trade
from the neighbouring country was using Albania as a transit stop en route
to Greece and other European countries.
21 kilos of hash found
Police today found 21 kilos of hashish in the rural region of Tagaradon in
They found one kilo and 350 grams of hashish in a jacket abandoned at a
shack. A further search uncovered another 20 kilos and 50 grams of the drug
in 18 packets stashed in a metal barrel buried in the ground.
Police believe the hashish had been smuggled into Greece by Albanians from
the neighbouring country and was destined for sale on the streets.
Meanwhile, a 30-year-old livestock breeder from Thessaloniki was arrested
for drugs possession at the nothern Greek capital's Macedonia Airport.
Emmanuel Adamopoulos was arrested with 4.5 grams of cocaine and half a gram
of hashish in his possession on arrival from Amsterdam.
Stowaways make good their escape
Four Moroccan stowaways were discovered hidden in the holds of the merchant
cargo ship "Nitsa-B" when it docked in the northern Greek port city of
Kavala, police said today.
The freighter had arrived from Morocco carrying 16,000 tons of phosphates
for the Nea Karvali phosphoric fertilizer industry in Kavala.
The stowaways were discovered by the ship's crew when it opened the holds
to unload the cargo.
The ship's Romanian captain ordered the detention of the stowaways and
informed the Kavala port authorities to take them into custody, but the
four managed to escape from the crew and fled on foot to the port, where a
search failed to locate them.
Syrian embassy cars torched
Unidentified persons set fire at dawn today to two cars belonging to the
Syrian Embassy, causing damage but no injuries, police said.
One of the cars, which were parked on corner of Kifissias and Panormou
streets in central Athens, was totally destroyed and the other was slightly
Police said the arsons were caused by a fire bomb, adding that a cannister
with remains of gasoline was found near the destroyed car.
Eyewitnesses told police that they saw "two young men near the cars who
sped off on a large motorcycle after the fire".
Fair weather is forecast for most parts of Greece today with some
cloudiness and scattered showers in Macedonia, Thrace and the eastern
Aegean Sea. Winds moderate westerly-southwesterly turning to northwesterly
in the evening in the west and north of the country. Athens will be mostly
sunny with temperatures from 7-14C. Same in Thessaloniki with temperatures
Monday's closing rates - buying US dlr. 284.129
Pound sterling 467.153 Cyprus pd 535.978
French franc 46.848 Swiss franc 192.974
German mark 156.805 Italian lira (100) 15.952
Yen (100) 213.588 Canadian dlr. 199.571
Australian dlr. 183.446 Irish Punt 401.760
Belgian franc 7.602 Finnish mark 51.812
Dutch guilder 139.118 Danish kr. 41.180
Swedish kr. 35.567 Norwegian kr. 38.440
Austrian sch. 22.295 Spanish peseta 1.852
Port. Escudo 1.532